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Vow to tackle rise in West Mercia knife offences over last 12 months

Crime | Published:

The number of knife offences resulting in a caution or sentence in the region has risen over the last year.

Knife offences resulting in a caution or sentence has risen over the last year

There were 294 people cautioned or sentenced in relation to knife or offensive weapon offences over the year up to September 2019 within the West Mercia area.

That is compared to 269 offences cautioned or sentenced in the year up to September 2018.

The figure is down from 349 in the year up to September 2017.

Nationally there were nearly 22,300 knife and offensive weapon offences dealt with by the criminal justice system.

West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner John Campion said: “Knife crime is a complex issue nationwide that doesn’t have a single, specific cause.

"It is not a problem we can expect to simply ‘police’ our way out of.

"Naturally our police have a central role to play in protecting us from knife crime and I will continue to hold the Chief Constable to account to ensure that in West Mercia that work is happening effectively.

"However, a more holistic approach across our society is needed if we are going to be most effective.”

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West Mercia Police Chief Superintendent Tom Harding said: “Over the past few years we‘ve carried out a lot of work to tackle knife crime.

"We know if someone carries a knife they are more likely to be stabbed themselves, which is why early intervention is absolutely crucial.

"Last year we introduced the successful Steer Clear programme in Telford to identify and support young people, and their families, on the periphery of becoming involved in knife crime and are now rolling this work out across the counties we cover.

"Police alone cannot tackle the issue and the programme sees us work in partnership with the local authority, schools, colleges and voluntary organisations.”

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