PARENTS have been warned of an "unprecedented" surge of anti-social behaviour by boozed up kids as young as 13.

Cops said schoolchildren in East Dunbartonshire have been running riot with youths throwing fireworks at passers-by, carrying out assaults and wrecking property.

The spike in serious crime is put down to the Covid-19 pandemic restricting young people's change to socialise.

But a stark warning about the two-month crime wave was sent in a letter to parents from education chief Jacqui MacDonald.

In it, she says Police Scotland has asked the council to raise parents' "awareness about the unprecedented level of youth disorder that is currently being experienced in our local authority area."

Chief Inspector Lorna Gibson said: "Over the past two months police have seen a marked increase in youth disorder and anti-social behaviour across the local authority area with a worrying rise in serious crime as a result, including assaults, fire-raising and damage to property.

"While I appreciate that the majority of children and young people are behaving responsibly during this time and I thank them for this, there are a minority who continue to gather in large groups and engage in disorder and anti-social behaviour, this is having a really negative impact on our communities.

"I am concerned about the part that alcohol has to play in some of the disorder, with alcohol being seized from children as young as 13.

"Fireworks are also featuring in this disorder and anti-social behaviour with frequent reports of children being in possession of fireworks, letting them off, throwing them towards people.

"The potential consequences of these actions are horrendous and could result in life changing injuries."

Police are currently carrying out additional patrols in the area to try to crack down on the behaviour.

They are also visiting off-licences to warn staff about selling drink to people who may pass it on to underage youngsters.

Workers are warned to contact police if they suspect this is happening, adding it is an offence to purchase of supply alcohol to anyone under the age of 18.

The chief inspector added: "I understand that due to the Covid-19 pandemic many places where young people normally go are either closed or offering a much reduced service just now.

"I am sympathetic to the difficulties faced by children and young people in having restrictions placed on their everyday lives and do not underestimate the impact this is having."