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Nine caught with weapons in North Yorkshire Police crackdown - including 14-year-old boy

Nine caught with weapons in North Yorkshire Police crackdown - including 14-year-old boy

Published by Lizzy McEllan at 5:54pm 18th March 2019. (Updated at 5:55pm 18th March 2019)

A week of action by North Yorkshire Police as part of a national campaign to crackdown on knives resulted in nine arrests, including a 14-year-old boy.

  • Nine arrests have been made in North Yorkshire as part of a national week-long crackdown on knives and weapons
  • Among those, was a 14-year-old boy, who has been referred to a Youth Outcome Panel
  • Eight knives were surrendered - despite the force not proactively promoting a knife amnesty

Operation Sceptre took place last week (11-17 March).

Officers worked with the British Transport Police to carry out patrols.

Three of those arrested, a 52-year-old man, a 35-year-old man and a 22-year-old man, were subsequently charged with possession of a bladed article in a public place and are due to appear in court.

knife

Four were released under investigation alongside other offences.

The fifth will face no further action after providing a valid reason to possessing a knife.

The last person, a 14 year-old boy, was released and referred to a Youth Outcome Panel.

Throughout the week of action, officers also partnered up with Trading Standards to undertake test purchasing operations in local retailers to test their compliance with knife sale regulations to under 18s.

weapon seized march 2019

Six out of ten retailers failed to take due diligence to challenge the 16-year-old buyer.

Commenting on the test purchasing operations, Detective Superintendent Steve Thomas, who is the operational lead for knife crime in North Yorkshire Police, said:

“It is an offence to sell a knife, knife blade, razor, axe or other article which has a blade or is sharply pointed to anyone under 18.

“All it takes is for one knife to fall in the wrong hands to have a devastating impact on many lives – not just the victim but their friends, family, community and the perpetrator as well.

knife 3

He added:

“Whilst this week’s results show that more work is needed to ensure that all shops are following the law over knife sales, I would like to say to well done to those stores who were prepared to challenge a youngster trying to buy knives. Their intervention could save a life.

“We will continue to work with partners in the future to check how well stores are meeting their legal responsibilities around selling knives to children.”

As part of the week of action, schools were provided with materials and advice to help educate young people about the dangers of carrying knives.

This including encouraging people to ‘Speak Up’ about concerns and advice for how schools can deal with incidents involving a young person found with a knife or weapon.

Several young people were provided with an ‘Op Divan’ early intervention which can include ‘one-to-one’ support and education on the dangers of carrying a knife, following information that they may have been thinking or had been carrying a knife or weapon.

Despite the force not proactively promoting a knife amnesty throughout the week, eight knives were surrendered at police stations across the county following the week of action.

Detective Superintendent Steve Thomas continued:

“Even though levels of knife crime in North Yorkshire are low and we live and work in one of the safest places in England, we must not be complacent.

“All the bladed items taken off the street of North Yorkshire during the week of action could have been potential weapons if they had got into the wrong hands – there is no risk of that now as they will all be destroyed appropriately.

“Anyone who has information on knife crime in their local community should contact North Yorkshire Police on 101.

“Alternatively information can be passed anonymously to the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

“In an emergency, always dial 999.”

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