Police taking part in national operation tackling knife crime

A week of action is taking place to reduce the devastation caused by knife crime.

By David Sedgwick
Monday, 16th May 2022, 2:38 pm
Northumbria Police Assistant Chief Constable Neil Hutchison with one of the knife surrender bins.
Northumbria Police Assistant Chief Constable Neil Hutchison with one of the knife surrender bins.

Northumbria Police is taking place in Op Spectre in the fight against knife crime.

Officers will be carrying out targeted activity including educational inputs and searches as part of the ongoing work to tackle knife crime and keep communities safe.

Surrender bins will also be available at seven different stations – including at Bedlington police station – to encourage members of the public to hand over any unwanted knives or sharp objects which they fear could fall into the wrong hands and endanger a life.

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Northumbria Police Assistant Chief Constable Neil Hutchison hopes the week of action will highlight the Force’s commitment to tackling knife crime and our dedication to supporting those impacted by it.

He said: “Thankfully here in the Northumbria Police area, we see lower levels of knife crime than comparative areas of the country.

"However, it remains one of our top priorities, and we remain proactive in our approach to ensure this region remains one of the safest places to live, work and visit.

“Our officers work all year round with partners to reduce the impact of knife crime and educate about the potentially devastating consequences of carrying a knife.

He added: “The surrender bins encourage people to safely dispose of knives so that everyone can help make sure no family has to face the harmful impact knife crime can have.

“These could be old kitchen knives, antiques found in an attic, or something used for fishing or hunting. This is a way to dispose of items safely, so they never run this risk of falling into the wrong hands.

“So, bin a knife – it could save a life.”

Officers will also be executing warrants, carrying out searches, seizing harmful weapons and taking proactive action against anyone caught in possession of a knife.

The activity is being carried out with the help and support of the team behind Project Adder – a unique diversionary scheme set up just over a year ago, which aligns the Force with partners, in a bid to tackle the serious harm and knock-on effects of illegal drug supply and organised crime.

Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner, Kim McGuinness, said: “There is no place for knife crime and serious violence in our communities and the work to fight these issues here in the North East is relentless.

“From dedicated operations like this, to the work of my Violence Reduction Unit which engages with young people around the dangers and risks of carrying a knife - we are determined to drive these crimes down and spare people of the harm and devastation a knife can cause.”

The surrender bins is now in place at Bedlington and Middle Engine Lane, Wallsend, police stations until May 22.

Anyone with information about someone in possession of a prohibited weapon, or want to report any suspicious activity, should contact police using the ‘Tell Us Something’ page on their website.

Alternatively, contact independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously by calling 0800 555 111.