Northumbria Police backs national campaign to reduce knife crime

Northumbria Police is taking part in a national drive to reduce knife crime.

Thursday, 12th September 2019, 6:38 pm
Updated Friday, 13th September 2019, 12:28 pm
One of the knife bins

From Monday until Sunday, September 22, the force will join others across the country to take part in Operation Sceptre – aimed at reducing the devastating effects of knife crime.

People will be able to hand in any knives or sharp objects, while officers will be carrying out a range of targeted activity from weapon sweeps to increased patrols and engaging with young people, delivering workshops to raise awareness of the devastation carrying knives can cause.

Assistant Chief Constable Helen McMillan, Northumbria Police’s lead for serious and violent crime, said: "Recently, we have seen a number of high-profile cases and attacks involving knives across the country and this has understandably raised concerns.

Assistant Chief Constable Helen McMillan

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“I would like to reassure people living in our communities that we take a very strong stance on knife crime and on all forms of serious violence.

“I would also like to stress that our area continues to experience low levels of knife crime compared to other big cities across the country, but we are not complacent and any incident is one too many. We are fully committed to making the streets we live and work as safe as we can.”

Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner, Kim McGuinness, said: “Any initiative that helps raise awareness of the dangers of carrying a knife and that helps recover sharp objects from our streets gets my full support. I’m passionate about keeping our local communities safe and early intervention, preventative outreach work is at the top of my agenda.

“I’m in the process of establishing a Violence Reduction Unit to work across the whole of Northumbria, with all six local authorities, and believe a public health approach focusing on the root causes will have a positive impact on driving down crime involving knives.”

Bins will be at police stations across the force area

If any of the items handed in are tested and found to contain DNA linking them to a crime. a thorough investigation will be carried out.

The knives will be destroyed by the force’s armoury, and bins will be at stations, including South Tyneside and Southwick.