Suffolk Constabulary are supporting the national week of action against knife crime, with amnesty bins open for members of the public.
The force is one of thirty-two forces nationally involved in the next Operation Sceptre week of action taking place between today and Sunday.
I would encourage anyone who has a knife or any other weapon to dispose of them responsibly and immediatelyTim Passmore
The week aims to highlight the risks that carrying a bladed weapon can bring, as well as targeting offenders who use and carry knives in the county.
Police from across the force will be targeting offenders connected with knife crime.
Officers and Special Constables from local policing areas, alongside drugs teams and response officers will use intelligence-led deployments, weapons sweeps and high-visibility patrols to target and disrupt offenders who carry and use knives. This is part of ongoing work with partners to tackle crime gang and associated gang activity.
Suffolk Constabulary is also working closely with schools and colleges to educate on the dangers of carrying a knife. Officers regularly deliver knife crime awareness messages alongside advice and guidance to children and young people across the county.
Knife amnesty bins across the county give people the opportunity to dispose of knives and blades safely. Since the Bin a Blade campaign was launched in 2011, well over 19,000 bladed items have been deposited.
Superintendent Kerry Cutler, lead for Operation Sceptre at Suffolk Police, said: “We take positive action to try and prevent offences by removing knives and offensive weapons before any harm is caused.
“We will continue to highlight the dangers of carrying knives, and other weapons, and the devastating consequences this can have on the lives of young people. If you are found illegally in possession of a knife you will be arrested, put before the court and brought to justice.
“Carrying knives or other weapons do not keep you safe. By carrying a knife you are putting yourself in much greater danger, and more likely to become involved in a violent situation and get injured yourself. This is a key message which we emphasis in our awareness-raising work with children and young people across Suffolk.”
Knife amnesty bins can be found outside Ipswich Fire Station and at police stations in Lowestoft, Bury St Edmunds, Mildenhall Sudbury and Haverhill.
Suffolk’s Police and Crime Commissioner, Tim Passmore, said: “We need to do all we can through education, peer pressure, policing and sentencing to make it absolutely clear that it’s never acceptable for a person to carry a knife or weapon. I find it really disappointing that anyone carries a blade of any kind.
“The Bin a Blade campaign and the use of these bins is a great way of highlighting the issue of knife crime. I would encourage anyone who has a knife or any other weapon to dispose of them responsibly and immediately. Ultimately it is about making Suffolk as safe as possible.”
Anyone with information on knife crime in their local community is asked to contact Suffolk Police on 101, or pass information to Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. In an emergency, always dial 999.
For more information and advice, go to www.suffolk.police.uk/advice/personal-safety/knife-crime