Scores of keen Pokemon Go gamers are gathering at a neighbourhood police office to use the virtual Poke Gym!
Officers realised that Blyth
Neighbourhood Police Office was getting more than the usual number of visitors when large groups of people were seen walking outside the office intent on their virtual games, gazing at their phone screens.
Police investigated and found Blyth Police Station has inadvertently become a ‘Poke gym’ overnight and hundreds of users are down at the quayside competing over ownership of the Blyth police Poke gym. The app uses google maps to populate ‘Pokemon hotspots’ at real life locations with key areas called ‘Poke Gyms.’
The neighbourhood office at Arms Evertyne House on Quay Road in the Northumberland town has been caught up in the craze with gamers using the on screen gym, keen to hone the fighting skills of their virtual monsters they previously captured during the game.
Neighbourhood beat officer PC Billy Mulligan said: “I couldn’t understand why we were getting so many young people turn up, but we worked it out seeing everyone on their phones. Having a gym here is great to meet so many people and for them to get to know us.
“We’re telling them to enjoy their game safely, do it with their friends, not to wander off alone, to make sure they let their parents know when they’re coming home, who they’ll be with and roughly where they’re thinking of going. Also reminding them to pay attention to their surroundings when playing so they don’t get lost, or put themselves in danger.”
Officers have also used the opportunity to get other crime prevention messages across and have been carrying out property marking on children’s bikes and mobile devices.
Officers even offered the gamers a place of shelter when they saw lots of youngsters out in the rain – they invited them into the front office to dry off and play their game in the warm. Youngsters have also been getting to know their local neighbourhood policing team officers and have enjoyed a tour of the building.
PC Mulligan added: “In this job each day is different but I never expected our base would become a gym to fight virtual monsters and a popular gathering place for gamers.”