The Times view on knife crime: Action This Day

Erika Holt
March 8, 2019

Dave Thompson, the chief constable of the West Midlands, told the Guardian that the home secretary has accepted the case from police chiefs that money was important and that more was needed.

"I think police resources are very important to deal with this", he said.

Sara Thornton, chairwoman of the National Police Chiefs' Council, said too many young people are dying on the streets of United Kingdom towns and cities and police needed to do all they can to stop the spiral of violence.

"The public are losing faith in our ability to control our streets and they need to see and they need to feel a step change in our response to public safety concerns", she said.

On Tuesday Met Police Commissioner Cressida Dick rebuked the PM, telling LBC there is "some link" between a reduction in police numbers and rising violent crime.

Sajid Javid held a summit with police chiefs from England and Wales today and said that the government should "listen" to them when they ask for more resources.

West Yorkshire Chief Constable Dee Collins, now on secondment with the College of Policing, wrote on Twitter: "Not only are there not sufficient Police Officers".

"We have a home secretary now [Sajid Javid] who I do think gets it".

Media captionKnife crime: What's it like to be stabbed?

Yousef Makki, also 17, was killed in Greater Manchester on Saturday. A second 17-year-old boy has been charged with assisting an offender and possession of a bladed article.

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Meanwhile, across the country, there has been a 12 per cent increase in police recorded offences involving a knife over the past year, to 39,332.

Jodie's grandmother, Debbie Chesney, wrote on Facebook: "We don't want anyone else to go through what our family is suffering right now".

Thompson said: "We can only surge in the short term by officers working longer hours, but we also need a sustainable surge".

In Lancashire, six people have been arrested over a gang attack at a sixth form college.

Calling for "real leadership" from May, Neyroud said cuts to police numbers reduce the capacity of the forces to deploy to "high crime locations, which we know will reduce such crimes".

The remarks appeared to put him at odds with Theresa May, who sparked controversy earlier this week by insisting there was no direct link between certain crimes and police numbers.

Evidence suggests the way to stop young people being stabbed does not lie exclusively with the criminal justice system.

The Labour leader challenged Theresa May to explain if she had any regrets over cutting police officer numbers and criticised the impact of "systematically" stripping away public services to support young people.

"And I'm afraid that's been demonstrated year after year, back when the prime minister was home secretary".

But Donna Murray-Turner, who chairs the Croydon Safer Neighbourhood Board, does not believe more police officers will solve the issue.

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