Police carry out 1,000 weapon searches during crackdown on knife crime

Leading detective says "London is safe"

Thursday, 27th May 2021 — By Bronwen Weatherby

knife-sweep

Officers look in shrubbery for discarded weapons

MORE than 1,000 weapons sweeps have been carried out across Camden and Islington since March in a police crackdown on knife crime.

There have been fears that the number of violent incidents would rise as lockdown eases and more people take advantage of the new freedoms to socialise in public and now indoors.

Detective Inspector Eliot Porritt said: “Of course, we are looking to take knives away and reduce the very real risk that someone could be seriously injured. We do this through a variety of statutory powers, which include stop and search, and the execution of search warrants.

“Regular weapons sweeps are another tactic to remove deadly weapons.”

One of 17 items found in last two months

He added: “I want to be absolutely clear that we are nowhere close to a position where our public spaces and housing estates are being stocked up with knives and weapons.

“In my opinion, London is comparatively safe,” he added.

In the 1,031 searches completed in the past two months only 17 items were found, according to the Central North police who cover both boroughs, less than a 2 per cent discovery rate.

DI Porritt added: “Any knife or weapon out there is potentially dangerous, and every single victim is a victim too many, which is why we will continue to conduct activities.”

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