Police in Cambridgeshire will be taking part in a national operation to tackle knife crime this week.
The week-long operation aims to reduce knife-related crime and tackle violence across the county.
In Cambridgeshire, offences involving knives or sharp instruments rose 58 per cent from 908 incidents in 2018 to 1,436 incidents in 2019. Between January and October this year there have been 1,178 offences.
On average, officers are arresting three people a week in Cambridgeshire for knife related offences (168 in 2018, 199 in 2019 and 168 between Jan-Oct 2020).
During the crackdown the force will be conducting knife sweeps, talking to retailers about selling to young people and educating school children through virtual presentations about the dangers of carrying knives.
There will also be a live question-and-answer session on the force Facebook page on Thursday (November 12) at 7pm where members of the public can find out more about knife crime.
Superintendent Robin Sissons said: “While offences involving knives has risen, Cambridgeshire’s figures are still below the national average and in line with a rise in offences across the country. It’s simple; knives ruin lives.
“People carrying knives, particularly young people, do so without understanding the real consequences of using them, the devastation it can cause to those who are seriously injured or fatally wounded, nor the impact on the families who have lost loved ones.
“We’d like to urge the family and friends of people who carry knives to encourage them to stop. That one conversation could be life changing and that one small action could be enough to save a life.”
It is illegal to:
Sell a knife of any kind to anyone under 18 years old
Carry a knife in a public place without good reason – unless it’s a knife with a folding blade three inches long or less, for example, a Swiss Army knife
Carry, buy or sell any type of banned knife
Use any knife in a threatening way
The maximum penalty for an adult carrying a knife is four years in prison and a fine of £5,000.
Anyone who knows someone who carries a knife can report it online at Cambridgeshire police or anonymously, via Crimestoppers: on 0800 555111 or www.crimstoppers-uk.org.