Chance to dispose of knives and weapons to help reduce knife crime in Nottinghamshire

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Knife amnesty bins have again been rolled out across the county as part of the latest Sceptre week of action.

Nottinghamshire Police will be providing a snapshot of its ongoing efforts to tackle knife crime over the next few days.

Educating people about the consequences of carrying knives and taking weapons off the streets are the main themes of the national campaign.

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This approach is being replicated in Nottinghamshire, with the county’s neighbourhood policing teams arranging knife sweeps, school visits, extra patrols and a range of other initiatives.

Nottinghamshire Police have launched the latest Sceptre week of actionNottinghamshire Police have launched the latest Sceptre week of action
Nottinghamshire Police have launched the latest Sceptre week of action

Amnesty bins have also been rolled out across the force area to allow people to dispose of knives or offensive weapons safely without fear of being prosecuted.

As part of Sceptre, which runs until Sunday, May 19, nine bins have been specially set up at the front counters inside police stations and at shared service locations across Nottinghamshire.

This is on top of the four knife amnesty drop off points already available for the public all year-round at stations in Mansfield, Newark, Radford Road and Oxclose Lane, Bestwood.

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Sceptre takes place twice a year, in May and November, and gives police forces an opportunity to showcase some of the work they do throughout the year to target knife crime.

More than 2,000 school children and college students were spoken to about the dangers of knives in Nottinghamshire during the last campaign, while 85 knives and offensive weapons were retrieved.

A range of initiatives led by the county’s neighbourhood policing teams have been planned for this Sceptre, including different public engagement events and the deployment of metal-detecting knife arches.

All of this is designed to provide just a snapshot of the work carried out by the force and its partners all year-round to tackle knife crime across Nottinghamshire's communities.

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This has all led to overall knife crime offences dropping by two per cent in the county, when comparing the year ending March 2024 with the year ending March 2023.

Chief Inspector Karl Thomas, Nottinghamshire Police’s knife crime lead, said: “Sceptre offers a great opportunity for us to educate more people about the dangers associated with carrying a knife by shining a light on this important topic.

“That decision to pick up a knife can have catastrophic consequences which could ruin or even end lives, so getting these lessons across at an early stage are vital to helping prevent this from happening.

“Our specialist school early intervention officers regularly attend schools and colleges to deliver sessions on knife crime to young people, and these visits will be stepped up throughout the week of action.

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“We’ll also be carrying out a variety of different initiatives and operations throughout the week, including rolling out 13 amnesty bins in total across the community for people to dispose of weapons without fear of reprisal.

“While I understand some people will have some concerns about going into a police station and using an amnesty bin, please rest assured that you won’t get into trouble if you do so – this is not a trick.

“This initiative has directly led to us seizing hundreds of unwanted blades in the past, with this success encouraging us to enhance this offering by setting up permanent amnesty bins inside four of our stations for use all year-round too.

“Whether it's through the daily patrols of our dedicated knife crime teams or school visits, we already do so much work, along with our partners, to take weapons off our streets and stop them from getting there in the first place.

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“Sceptre offers merely a sample of some of this, but anything that can be done to raise awareness about knife crime is incredibly important, so we’re proud to support this national campaign.”

Nottinghamshire Police and Crime Commissioner Gary Godden said: “Sceptre is a fantastic way of highlighting the great work that goes on all year-round in Nottinghamshire to stop people carrying knives.

“The campaign is crucial in educating those who may be considering taking a weapon out with them and emphasising the fact that carrying a knife does not protect you, it simply increases the level of danger for you and those around you.

“The amnesty bins provide a safe space to dispose of knives without the worry of facing prosecution while helping to make Nottinghamshire a safer place for all.”

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Throughout the week of action, knife amnesty bins will be situated inside stations, shared services and other locations including Bulwell Police Station on Gilead Street, Bulwell; The Square, Retford; Potter Street, Worksop; Urban Road, Kirkby and Ollerton Police Station on Forest Road, Ollerton.

Members of the public should check the opening times at the relevant police station near them before attempting to drop off any items.