Durham Constabulary is launching a week-long knife amnesty inviting residents to surrender knives into which people can make anonymous deposits of bladed articles that could otherwise be used in crime.
The amnesty, code named Operation Brassen, will see ‘knife bins’ located at police stations across the county, to raise awareness of the harm caused by knife crime, and to reduce the number of crimes taking place by removing potential weapons from circulation.
Detective Chief Inspector Paul Gray, from Durham Constabulary, said: “Knife crime has the potential to devastate the lives of victims, families and communities. We recognise the impact this can have on a range of people and we’re committed to tackling it.
“Whilst we recognise that Durham Constabulary is a safe place to live and work by taking these knives out of circulation, we’re taking away the opportunity for a crime to occur at all”.
During this amnesty week, police will also be carrying out an awareness and education campaign with the Crime Prevention and Cohesion Unit. Sessions will be held at schools throughout the force area to highlight the dangers of knives and the impact they can have.
Utilising social media, Keep in the know, and partners, we will be working together to educate our communities around the risk of carrying knives and the devastating impact it can have.
Operation Brassen begins on Monday (September 17), and the bins will be sited at the following police stations:
• Darlington (DL1 5LB)
• Bishop Auckland (DL14 6LB)
• Spennymoor (DL16 6FB)
• Durham City (DH1 3AQ)
• Peterlee (SR8 1QR)
• Consett (DH8 5DL)
• Chester-le-Street (DH3 3TY)
• Crook (DL15 8NE)
• Stanley (DH9 0BL)
• Seaham (SR7 8AD)
• Barnard Castle (DL12 8JU)
Durham Constabulary encourages anyone who carry such items to consider using this amnesty to dispose of them safely without question and to use this week-long opportunity to reflect and change habits understanding the penalties that can be imposed and the risks and harms they can bring.
Anyone with ornamental knives, weapons, or any items they no longer use are invited to dispose of them safely within this week.
DCI Gray said: “This campaign is ultimately about saving lives, and we do that by putting a spotlight on possession of knives to prevent this becoming an issue in County Durham and Darlington and to keep our communities safe from harm.”