Battle against knife crime 'continues all-year round', say police after week of action

Suffolk police officers at Ipswich railway station

Suffolk police officers at Ipswich railway station as part of Operation Sceptre - Credit: Suffolk police

Police made seven arrests as part of a week-long crackdown against knife crime in Suffolk but stressed the force's work "continues all-year round". 

The arrests were made across the county for knife possession offences as officers in Suffolk took part in Operation Sceptre - the national drive to fight knife crime

Officers executed a warrant in Burrell Road, Ipswich, which resulted in eight knives being seized and four people being arrested for drug offences.

Other activity during the week included high visibility patrols at railway stations such as Ipswich and Bury St Edmunds with British Transport Police.

Officers also carried out 22 weapons sweeps and recovered seven knives.

Inspector Matt Paisley, the operational lead for Op Sceptre, said: "This was a really productive week for us in terms of addressing the national issue of knife crime. 

"It’s important to point out that while this was a dedicated week of action, our work to tackle knife crime continues all-year round. 

"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.”

Schools liaison officers and community engagement officers in the county also supported more than 19 events in schools and colleges, delivering information on knife crime, county lines drug dealing and gang activity

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The work included assemblies and classroom talks with officers encouraging honest conversations around knife crime and to highlight the dangers of carrying knives.

More than 250 knives and bladed items were also recovered from the knife surrender amnesty bins across the county where people are able to dispose of knives and blades safely. 

Knife crime rose 51% in Suffolk over the past year Picture: KATIE COLLINS/PA WIRE

Operation Sceptre is a national week of action to fight knife crime - Credit: PA

Three bins are located in Ipswich (outside the fire station, Queen’s Way and Bramford Road) and at police stations in Lowestoft, Bury St Edmunds, Mildenhall, Sudbury and Haverhill and in Stowmarket at the junction of Stricklands Road and Ipswich Street. 

Insp Paisley added: "Despite the constraints of operating under Covid-19 restrictions we continued to target those involved in county lines, and carry out positive work with the community, residents and the engagement with schools.

"We were warmly received in schools and colleges and there were some really searching and intelligent questions from the children and young people on the topic of knife crime and gangs."

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 555111.