Posted: Mon 13th May 2024

Operation Sceptre: North Wales Police join nationwide fight against knife crime

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales


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North Wales Police will be joining police forces up and down the country to support ‘Operation Sceptre’, a week-long national campaign committed to addressing the ongoing issue of knife crime.

Coordinated by the National Police Chief’s Council (NPCC) Operation Sceptre is a national week of action which runs from 13 – 19 May and brings all 43 police forces and British Transport Police together for a coordinated period of intensification to tackle knife crime, a large contributor to violent crime in the UK.

As part of the week-long operation, people are being encouraged to leave unwanted knives in amnesty bins at police station front counters and at some recycling centres across north Wales.

Inspector Geraint Richards of North Wales Police said: “We must ensure that we are doing everything we can to reinforce the message that carrying a knife is unacceptable and that no good can come from carrying one.

“Every incident involving a knife has consequences for all those involved, and so this is an issue we take extremely seriously.

“We take a robust approach to anyone found to be illegally in possession of a knife or bladed article on the streets and I would encourage everyone to take the opportunity to rid yourselves of any unwanted or illegal weapons by taking them to our knife amnesty bins which are located at our police station front counters.

“Knives are dangerous and there is no place for them on the streets of North Wales. Carrying knives or other weapons do not keep you safe. By carrying a knife, you are putting yourself in much greater danger, and more likely to become involved in a violent situation and get injured yourself.

Inspector Richards added: “Whilst the causes and drivers of knife crime are complex, early intervention and putting in place measures to tackle the root causes are essential. We are committed to taking a collaborative approach to tackle knife crime across north Wales and we will continue to build on the already successful work with our partners and communities.

“Retailers have an important role to play in tackling knife crime by ensuring that knives are not falling into the wrong hands. With this, officers will be visiting local retail stores to “knowledge check” staff regarding the sales of knives and the ‘Challenge 25 ID’ approach.”

Education

A significant amount of police efforts involves community and school engagement, where they educate young people about the far-reaching effects of knife possession through initiatives like SchoolBeat.

Throughout the week, School Community Police Officers will visit schools and colleges to discuss the dangers and repercussions of carrying knives.

Inspector Richards added: “We are also asking parents, guardians and extended family members, to talk to young family members about knife crime as you can play a vital role in preventing them from becoming involved. We advise you try and talk to them openly about the dangers, as well as the life-changing consequences that come from carrying a knife.

“We are grateful for the support from our partners and communities and together, we will continue to work towards removing knives and dangerous weapons and bring those responsible, for carrying and using them, to justice.”

Legislation 

The Offensive Weapons Act 2019 has introduced new regulations making it illegal to possess items such as knuckledusters, throwing stars, and zombie knives, even privately. The act also updates the definition of flick knives, reflecting modern designs, and prohibits their private possession alongside gravity knives.

Further details on these legislative changes can be found on the Government website under “Knives and offensive weapons information – GOV.UK” (www.gov.uk).

If you are concerned about someone carrying or concealing a knife, contact the Police at 101 or CrimeStoppers anonymously at 0800 555 111. For emergencies, always dial 999. Information can also be provided through the Fearless campaign at https://www.fearless.org/en/give-info.

  • Unwanted knives can be safely disposed of in amnesty bins located permanently at police stations in Mold and Deeside, and temporarily at Greenfield Recycling Centre.

 

 

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