Intensification Week of Action to Tackle Knife Crime in Kirklees

Monday 9 September, 2019

Kirklees District Police has conducted an intensification week of action to tackle knife crime and violent crime across Kirklees.

Officers continue to fight the growing threat of knife crime on a daily basis, but this awareness week included various elements including educational activities at colleges and schools, targeted enforcement work, including two overnight operations in Huddersfield town centre, test purchase operations and licensing checks.

The aim of the week of action was to promote anti-knife crime messages throughout the communities in Kirklees, engage with communities to offer reassurance and build confidence in proactive police work, educate young people about the impact of knife crime and through test purchasing ensure local businesses are not allowing the sale of knives to young people.

From 2 September, District officers were supported various teams throughout the week. These included Op Jemlock officers, NPT, Kirklees CID, West Yorkshire Police dog unit, Licencing teams, Crimestoppers, Security Industry Authority (SIA), British Transport Police (BTP), Kirklees Council, West Yorkshire Police Roads Policing Unit, Police Cadets and PCSOs.

#OpJemlock started in April after Chief Constable John Robins QPM, met with the Home Secretary. Several police forces across the country including West Yorkshire were given additional funding to tackle the threat of serious violence and knife crime.

This operation is West Yorkshire Police’s response to violent crime and has seen more than 750 arrests in five months and 80 weapons have been removed from the streets.

#OpJemlock involves officers carrying out proactive, high visibility patrols in key areas across West Yorkshire.

Results from the week of action:

  • 18 people arrested for a variety of offences including burglary, assault, drugs offences, public order and possession of a knife;
  • Two cars seized;
  • Safety arches positioned at Kirklees College and establishments in the town centre;
  • Knife sweeps conducted in Huddersfield town centre;
  • Car stopped during night time operation on Friday night (6 September) on Bradford Road, Huddersfield – Class C drugs seized and male arrested;
  • 33 Section 35 (Directions to leave) notices issued to people in the town centre;
  • Safety arches deployed at various locations in the District;
  • Test purchasing operation was carried out by the Licensing Team against a number of shops for both large and small knives – all shops passed.
  • NPT officers were deployed to Huddersfield bus station and went on-board buses to give safety advice to children and young people.

Detective Inspector Mark Catney, of Kirklees CID, said: “Over the past week, together with various partner agencies and officers from across Kirklees, we have been conducting numerous proactive policing operations with an aim to tackle knife crime and violent crime.

“The results we have achieved in such a short space of time, has been fantastic. I hope that these types of operations provides reassurance to our communities and residents that knife crime and violent crime is a priority for us and we are continually working to tackle this issue within the Kirklees District.

“Knives are not the answer and we have seen first-hand the devastation using a knife can have, not just for the victims and the families of the victims, but for perpetrators too.

“Statistics have shown that if you carry a knife for protection, you are putting yourself in danger as it is likely to be used against you – around a third of knife-related injuries are actually caused by the victim’s own knife.

“This intensification week of action we have conducted in Kirklees has helped us to raise further awareness of knife crime and we will continue to prosecute those who carry knives. The enforcement and proactive work we do is only one part of the solution to this issue – the public also has a vital role to play.

“As part of this operation, we have been working with Kirklees College and have spoken to young people and students about knife crime. I would urge the public if you have a young person in your family, I would ask you to educate them on the dangers of carrying a knife. If you have any information anyone in the community who carries a knife, or information where knives are sold illegally, I would urge you to get in touch with us so we can act upon any intelligence we receive.”

Cllr Carole Pattison, Kirklees Council Cabinet member for Learning, Aspiration and Communities, said: "We are happy to see how successful this intensification week has been and Kirklees Council will be continuing to work hard with the police and other organisations to challenge and prevent violence, and to keep our young people and communities safe."

Anyone who has any information about suspicious behaviour in their area or information about people carrying knives, they are urged to contact the police either online via www.westyorkshire.police.uk/contact-us or via 101.

Reports can also be made anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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