Tackling violence together by taking knives off the streets
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As part of their on-going commitment to tackle street violence, we will be taking part in a range of activities as part of the national Operation Sceptre led by the Home Office.
The week of activity will launch on Monday, 9 November, and whilst activities have been adjusted following the new Covid restrictions, they will include educational, preventative and enforcement activities.
Knife crime is low across the counties of Herefordshire, Shropshire and Worcestershire in comparison to other parts of the country, but we remain committed to both preventing and reducing violent crime.
Throughout the week officers will be raising awareness of the dangers of carrying a knife through virtual school visits, speaking to children and young people. Community weapons sweeps will also take place to ensure parks and public spaces are safe.
The knife detection arch will be in place at key locations such as supermarkets and train stations with the aim of both detecting and removing weapons and discouraging people from carrying them. Enforcement activity such as the execution of intelligence led search warrants at properties suspected to be involved in drug and knife crime will also be happening across the three counties.
Head of Local Policing, Chief Superintendent Paul Moxley, who leads on knife crime said: “We are fortunate we do not experience the same levels of knife crime in our towns and cities as has been seen in other parts of the country, however that absolutely does not mean we are complacent. We know it does happen and it is important we take steps to prevent young people from carrying a knife and crimes involving knives.
“Early intervention is vital and for the past two years our Steer Clear programme has helped young people involved in, or on the periphery of being involved in, knife crime find an alternative route.
“The programme sees us work closely with other agencies, such as the local authority, schools and voluntary organisations, as we recognise police alone cannot tackle knife crime. It is really important it is a multi-agency approach with everyone playing their part.
“One knife incident is one too many and the more we can do to stop knives getting into the wrong hands and being used in crime the better.”
There are number of ways people can report concerns for a young person and the possibility they are involved in knife crime. There are several charities that can be used to report anonymously such as Crimestoppers. You can call them 0800 555111 or visit www.fearless.org where you can raise concerns and also find out more information on the stark consequences of knife crime.
C/Supt Moxley added: “We would encourage anyone who is concerned someone they know may be involved in knife crime to report their concerns. They don’t need to do this to police, they can report concerns anonymously through Crimestoppers or Fearless where they don’t need to give their details.
“It’s not about criminalising children and young people involved in knife crime it’s about making sure they have support and guidance to find an alternative route, helping to make their life, and the lives of those around them, much safer."