Shepton Mallet, a small market town in Somerset, experienced a sharp spike in reported crimes in November, rising 40 per cent year on year. With 14 more crimes filed than in 2013, the blame has been laid at the feet of a somewhat-unlikely source -- an 11-year-old boy.
The real-life Dennis the Menace (who can't be named for legal reasons) is thought to be responsible for a fifth of all the reported crimes, with his spree single-handedly giving authorities a headache and top crimestoppers left wondering how they're going to explain to their superiors that a lad whose balls have barely dropped has left them red-faced.
The boy came to the attention of authorities back in June of last year, and seemingly later had earlier crimes attributed to him by November, going some way towards explaining the spike. But these weren't just stealing the odd penny sweet or bus fare bunk -- he's thought to have committed acts of arson and criminal damage in the town, whose residents number just 10,000. They breed 'em gangsta down south...west. [Independent]