Sussex Police tackles knife crime with additional Home Office funding

14/07/2020

Sussex Police continues to tackle knife crime and serious violence after securing £871,555 funding from the Home Office for 2020/2021.

The funds will see the force build on the positive results seen last year through targeted activities such as hotspot patrols, weapon sweeps and test purchasing activities as well as educational outreach in schools and local communities.

Sussex sees a relatively low number of knife-related incidents, with possession and ADR* offences accounting for less than one per cent of all reported crime from April 2019 to March 2020. However, in line with the national picture, Sussex has seen a rise in knife crime and is focused on reducing the number of knife-related incidents.

Chief Inspector Dee Wells said: "Far too many lives have been affected by knife crime and our priority is to make Sussex a safer place to be. We are determined to get knives off our streets and reduce violent crime.

"Our combined approach of proactive and preventative policing saw fantastic results last year and our plan is to build on that success by continuing to engage with our local communities and carry out targeted operations across the region.

"Our key priority is sending the message that carrying a knife is dangerous and can have serious consequences. We are clear that carrying a knife does not make you safer, it puts you at more risk of becoming a victim and we would encourage anyone with concerns to reach out and seek help."

Police and Crime Commissioner Katy Bourne said: "Sussex Police have been steadfast in their commitment to taking prolific offenders off our streets and tackling serious violence.

"This extra funding is welcome news and will help the force to continue the successful, proactive work they have already started across Sussex to prevent knife crime.

"Please remember that a knife is a weapon and just by carrying one you are putting yourself and others in grave danger. The message is clear – lose the knife not a life.”

For an in-depth look at a local day of action targeting knife crime and violence see details on Wealden day of action.

Additionally, during a day of action on 23 June, officers arrested six people in Worthing for various offences including robbery, public order, nuisance behaviour, attempted criminal damage and possession of a weapon and drugs. In addition, the team carried out 14 stops, eight searches and submitted seven intelligence logs.

Last year Sussex Police's activities enabled by Home Office funding included 335 hotspot patrols, 448 arrests, visits to 76 schools and engagement with over 116,000 young people, 44 road shows, 251 weapons seized, 106 test purchases and 16,545 intelligence logs.

Throughout 2020/21 Sussex Police's approach will be to continue to build on this work by engaging with partners, young people, parents and carers and more widely with our local communities to reduce serious violence.

What to do if you’re worried

If you are under 18, you feel threatened, unsafe or scared about becoming a victim of knife crime you should try to talk with your parent or carer, or alternatively talk to Childline for help on 0800 1111 or go online at childline.org.uk.

If you are a parent or carer and you are concerned someone you care for is in danger of becoming a victim of knife crime, try to talk with them in the first instance or seek advice from Family Lives on 0808 800 22 22.

Whether you are a parent or young person you can contact Sussex Police on 101 to speak with your local Prevention Team.

Who do I report knife crime to?

You can report knife crime online or by calling 101. In an emergency always call 999.

To report knife crime anonymously go to https://www.fearless.org/en/give-info

*ADR offences are serious violent offences which have been enabled with a knife.

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