Knife crime – information for all
Knife crime is any crime that involves a sharp or bladed instrument, and can include anything from a kitchen knife or piece of glass to a potato peeler or a knitting needle. Knife crime can range from threat of violence, where someone is carrying a sharp or bladed instrument to someone who receives an injury as a result of a sharp object or bladed instrument.
There are many different criminal offences relating to knives and offensive weapons – offences include:
- carrying a knife in a public place without good reason
- using any knife in a threatening way
- carrying, buying or selling any type of banned knife such as a stealth knife, baton, disguised knife, zombie knife
- selling a knife of any kind to anyone under 18-years-old.
Anyone carrying a knife or a gun, even an imitation one, will be arrested and prosecuted. It is no excuse in UK legislation to say it was for protection or they were carrying it for someone else. A change in the Law means that anyone aged 16-17 years old who is convicted of carrying a knife for a second time will automatically receive a detention and training order of at least 4 months.
Why do people carry knives?
Many of those who carry knifes say initially they carried them for their own protection. Evidence shows that those who carry knives for their own protection are more likely to become a victim as a result and the knife can be turned on them.
However some experts argue that often it is a fear of gangs and crime that leads to young people carrying knives, because they believe it will help to keep them safe. Those weapons may then be used which could make the number of violent incidents go up. Find out more in our gang activity & serious youth violence resource.
GMP are working closely with partner agencies to promote and increase public confidence in their ability to reduce knife crime across our region – find out more about their Knives take lives campaign at www.gmp.police.uk/campaigns
Childline have an age appropriate gun and knife crime resource which can be found at www.childline.org.uk/gun-knife-crime
If you are aware of a person carrying a knife and is a threat, phone the Police immediately on 999 or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111
If a child or young person is at risk of harm please report it.
Safeguarding children & young people in education from knife crime
Findings have been condensed into recommendations that focus on areas of practice and policy for schools and wider agencies individually, and together, that can be tightened to keep children and young people safer – these include:
- improving partnership working and strategic planning
- sharing and promoting good practice in relation to exclusions and managed moves
- coordinating early help and prevention
- improving information-sharing
- teaching the curriculum and supporting children to achieve.
Anti-knife crime campaign
The campaign includes a dedicated #knifefree website which provides advice, signposts support services and highlights activities to empower young people to change their behaviour.
For further information visit the website www.knifefree.co.uk or to download resources visit the website www.gov.uk/knifefree-campaign-graphics-and-posters