A small gang of trouble-making teenagers are waging a campaign of terror on Greenock streets.

The tearaways have been running rampage in the centre of the town, from the Bank Street area up to Broomhill, pictured.

Over the last eight months they have smashed up cars, threatened passers-by, slashed tyres and shouted verbal abuse at neighbours.

Recently renovated properties owned by River Clyde Homes have also been targeted, as well as the new St Patrick’s Primary School building site.

Residents say they are living in fear of five boys and three girls.

One victim, who is too scared to be identified told our sister publication The Greenock Telegraph: “We all know exactly who they are. They mostly come from Lynedoch Street. Their parents just don’t care and let them run the streets. 

“Some of them are as young as 12. They have slashed the tyres of a disabled man’s car. How low can you get?

“People are so scared of them, because they wouldn’t think twice about targeting you.

“But I am worried that they are slashing tyres, so they must be carrying knives.

“One man who needs walking sticks was abused and threatened by them in the street.

“They have smashed just about every window in empty properties owned by River Clyde Homes. It must be costing them a lot of money.”

Greenock police moved to reassure the public that they were dealing with the incidents.

Sergeant Laura Stewart said: “We have had a number of reports of vandalism and anti-social behaviour reported to us in the Broomhill area over the last couple of months. 

“We are working with River Clyde Homes and Inverclyde Council social protection team including the community wardens to identify those involved and take every step to report those responsible so that they can be held accountable for their actions.

“This behaviour is wholly unacceptable and will not be tolerated by any of the agencies, particularly in an area with such good community spirit and where we work closely with the residents. 

“There will be additional patrols in the area to deter this behaviour and to reassure the community that we are working with them to bring this to an end.”

River Clyde Homes say they are also concerned with the mindless acts of vandalism.

Their neighbour relations manager Duncan McKnight said: “We have invested considerably in the regeneration of Broomhill and are committed to meeting the aspirations of residents. 

“It’s disappointing that some vandalism has recently taken place, however, we are working closely with the local community and our partners in Police Scotland and Inverclyde Council to address this issue.”

Anyone with information regarding the vandals is urged to call 101 and ask to speak to the neighbourhood officers, PC Alastair McDonald and PC Lynda Quigley, directly.

Sergeant Stewart has also asked the public to contact the police at the time of any ongoing incident.