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People urged to 'bin a knife... to save a life' as Dorset and Hampshire police join week-long national amnesty Operation Sceptre



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“BIN a knife… to save a life.” This is the message to the public from Hampshire and Dorset police forces amid a week-long national amnesty for blades.

Operation Sceptre is actively urging people to dispose of unwanted knives and blades at local recycling centres or securely packaged in household waste to help keep communities safe.

There is also a knife surrender bin at the front of Lymington police station until Friday 19th November, where people can surrender knifes, and other weapons, between 8am and 4pm – except between 12-1pm when it will be closed.

A machete handed in during a previous knife amnesty
A machete handed in during a previous knife amnesty

Hampshire police added: "Throughout the week, and beyond, local residents are being urged to help their local communities to never choose knifes – and to call police on 101 if they are concerned about someone carrying a knife, or worried someone is going to be hurt.

"Fearless.org, who we are working in partnership with, offer anonymous online reporting and information on knife crime for young people," the force added.

In Dorset the campaign and hand-in lasts until 21st November, and officers will be running proactive operations and activity in targeted areas.

There will be workshops in schools to educate pupils about the effects of knife crime, help them understand the law and prevent them from carrying knives. These will be followed up by information letters to parents.

Data from the Office for National Statistics shows Dorset has one of the lowest knife crime rates (41.3 per 100,000) of all 43 police forces, and officers hope to maintain this record.

There is a knife surrender bin at the front of Lymington police station until Friday
There is a knife surrender bin at the front of Lymington police station until Friday

During the week, people will also be reminded of changes in legislation that came into effect in July, making it an offence to possess items such as knuckledusters, throwing stars and zombie knives. This includes in private places like homes.

Adults carrying knives face up to four years in prison and an unlimited fine, with those convicted more than once getting a custodial sentence.

Ch. Supt Mark Callaghan vowed the force would not be complacent about the relatively low knife crime rate and would continue proactive education and prevention.

“As a force we will not tolerate knife crime and aim to reduce the number of incidents involving knives across the county,” he said.

“Any knife taken out of circulation and off the street helps to prevent injuries and deaths.”

Basic guidance on knife law, banned knives and weapons, and legitimate reasons for carrying a knife can be found online at www.gov.uk/buying-carrying-knives



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