This week Leicestershire Police is joining police forces up and down the country to support ‘Operation Sceptre’ – a week-long national campaign aimed at tackling knife crime.
Taking place between Monday 15 November and Sunday 21 November 2021, Operation Sceptre will see the police service across the UK highlighting the risks that carrying a bladed weapon can bring, as well as targeting offenders who use and carry knives in the area.
Across the week in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland officers will be carrying out a variety of policing activity including visiting schools to talk to students; using a knife arch in key locations; carrying out knife ‘sweeps’ in parks and other locations; visiting habitual knife carriers and liaising with shops who sell knives to ensure they are challenging anyone who they believe to be under 18 and ensuring that any knives are being displayed in a safe, secure and appropriate manner.
Melton Police were out on the Fairmead Estate in the town as part of the operation.
A post on the Melton Police Facebook page said: "PC BALL and PC HILL were on the Fairmead Estate yesterday evening completing a knife sweep as part of #OpSceptre.
Melton Police are carrying out a number of operations this week alongside knife sweeps and also visiting schools in the area to talk about the dangers of knife crime and carrying knives. We are raising the awareness of legislation that makes it illegal to: carry a knife in public without good reason. Carry, buy or sell any type of banned knife. Use any knife in a threatening way. Sell a knife to anyone under the age of 18."
The post continued: "In addition to this, if you have any unwanted knives, then Melton Police Station has a ‘Amnesty Bin’ located in the front office where you can dispose of any knives safely."
Police carrying out a search operation in Melton last night. Photo: Melton Police.
Teachers are also being encouraged to sign up to one of a series of anti-knife crime digital workshops for secondary schools across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland. The free one-hour workshops will cover a variety of knife crime related information and have been designed to support the Personal and Social Education (PSE) curriculum objectives with material that will engage students.
Detective Chief Inspector Gavin Drummond, from the Violent and Complex Crime Unit, said; “Whilst the vast majority of people don't carry knives or get involved with knife crime, we are working hard, with partner agencies, to tackle the knife crime offences that do occur and help prevent incidents from happening in the first place.
“Knives are dangerous and there is no place for them on our streets. Carrying knives or other weapons do not keep people safe. People who carry a knife put themselves in much greater danger and more likely to become involved in a violent situation and get injured.
“We have seen the devastating impact knife crime can have, often tearing families and communities apart, and that is why it is so important to educate people about the dangers of carrying a knife and arrest those who refuse to listen.”
Follow the campaign on social media via the #OpSceptre hashtag.