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Week of Action on Knife Crime

More than 1,000 weapons including Taser devices were recovered and 49 people were arrested during a week of action on knife crime.

Officers also stopped and searched 232 people and gave 58 educational awareness sessions to hundreds of schoolchildren and community groups throughout the national Operation Sceptre, from 16-22 September.

Members of the public handed in a record 949 weapons in a knife amnesty, meaning more people than ever have shown their desire to help keep their communities safe from knives. A further 34 blades were recovered during weapons sweeps in open spaces, 18 were recovered in an operation targeting illegally imported weapons and eight were seized during stop and search activity.

Trading Standards supported Operation Sceptre by carrying out test purchases at 11 shops, with two failing by selling a knife to a child. Trading Standards will investigate those shops further, while the shops that passed will be sent a letter thanking them for upholding the law.

Assistant Chief Constable Kate Meynell, of Nottinghamshire Police, said: "This is an outstanding result and with so many knives taken out of circulation and proactive action taken against offenders it is fair to say the operation has made our communities safer.

"The support of our partners, community groups and individuals who have disposed of knives has made this possible and I'd like to thank everyone for their help.

"Some of the weapons recovered include samurai swords, butterfly knives, flick knives, axes, Bowie knives, machetes and even Tasers. Many of these would have the potential to cause serious harm in the wrong hands so to take so many out of harm's way is fantastic.

"While Operation Sceptre has now finished, Nottinghamshire Police will continue to tackle the issue all year round and with the increasing level of support we have experienced from partners and the community we are really positive about the impact it is having."

Operation Sceptre is a national initiative held twice a year by forces across the country. As well as a knife amnesty, it is an opportunity to showcase some of the work that police forces engage in throughout the year to tackle knife crime.

In Nottinghamshire, the new Dare 25 education programme including knife crime advice was launched for schools across Nottinghamshire and hundreds of children attended the Safety Zone knife crime workshops at Holme Pierrepont.

Officers carried out weapons sweeps at 64 parks and open spaces across the county and there was an operation by Nottinghamshire Police and East Midlands Special Operations Unit to visit the homes of 10 people to issue advice after the UK Border Force intercepted weapons being illegally imported.

Paddy Tipping, Nottinghamshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner, said: “I hope that this response means that people are realising that carrying a knife is unacceptable.  I’m pleased that so many people have taken this opportunity to surrender these potentially lethal weapons.  It’s a great result, but let’s be clear: the work doesn’t stop there.  There is a huge amount of work on-going with the police and our partners to tackle knife crime and other serious violence.  We need to change hearts and minds on this and I believe that this surrender signals a positive start.”



Operation Sceptre stats at a glance:

* 949 weapons handed in during the amnesty at 25 amnesty bins across Nottinghamshire (up from 635 weapons in March 2019 and 418 weapons in September 2018).

* 34 blades recovered during 64 weapons sweeps.

* 18 weapons recovered by officers who visited 10 people as part of an operation tackling the illegal importation of knives.

* Eight knives seized by officers as part of 232 stop and searches.

* 49 people arrested by officers as part of Op Sceptre - including 12 for knife-related offences.

* 11 shops visited in test purchase operation by Trading Standards, with two failing.


Posted on Monday 30th September 2019
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