Hundreds of knives have been surrendered in Hertfordshire during the latest Operation Sceptre week of action against knife crime, which concluded on Sunday 21 May.
A knife amnesty began on Monday 15 May and was part of the week of action to reduce the number of illegal knives in circulation. Due to an increase in concerns about knife crime across the country in recent years, regular knife amnesties are being carried out, which provide a great opportunity to raise awareness and give advice about the risks of carrying a knife in public.
During the week 437 knives were surrendered across the county which included swords, hunting knives, machetes and a variety of pocket and kitchen knives.
Other activities carried out during the campaign included engagement events with young people in schools and public areas and visits to retailers to ensure they are adhering to laws regarding knife sales to those under 18. Knife detection operations, including covert and high visibility patrols and knife sweeps were also conducted at locations across the county.
Inspector Emma Bilsdon, from Hertfordshire Constabulary’s Prevention First team, who led the campaign, said: “There is always a great response from local residents during our weeks of action and we always get lots of positive feedback from all the young people we speak to as part of our activities.
“The Prevention First approach we take in Hertfordshire means that we ensure that everybody understands the consequences and the penalties associated with knife crime. By working with local schools, colleges, charities and councils, we steer young people towards positive life choices. We help the to understand the dangers knives pose, as well as ensure that knives are not readily available, whether online, in shops or passed around in the community.”
The Constabulary‘s Gangs and Schools team regularly conduct activities, including live streamed events online, to raise awareness amongst young people of the dangers of knife crime and gang involvement. You can find more about the team and their activities, including upcoming events on Twitter @HertsCYP.
Report knife crime via the non-emergency number 101 or report information online.
Alternatively, you can contact the independent crime-fighting charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or through their Anonymous Online Form. No personal details are taken, information cannot be traced or recorded and you will never need to go to court.