Tackling Knife Crime

While knife crime remains low in the Humberside Force area in comparison to other parts of the country, we are committed to doing everything we can to tackle this serious crime.  

Operation Sceptre is a national intensification campaign by police forces aimed at reducing knife crime by targeting those carrying weapons and disrupting the supply of knives available to use. It takes place twice a year - in May and November – and supports the work Humberside Police carries out all year round to ensure residents are safe from knife crime in their communities.

Our officers undertake a range of activities including targeted operations, engagement and education to reassure young people they are safer not carrying knives.  Following new legislation, brought in on the 14 July 2021, it is also now illegal to own certain items including knuckle dusters, zombie knives and throwing stars – even within a private dwelling.

Our message to those who carry a knife, or who are thinking of carrying one, is that carrying a knife does not protect you. It only adds to your vulnerability, placing you in dangerous situations, and serious harm, not to mention the legal consequences of being found in possession of one. Knives destroy lives, affecting you, and the people around you.    

Enforcement alone will not tackle the root causes of why people become involved in knife crime. We collaborate with partners including councils, schools, colleges, youth agencies, businesses such as clubs and bars, and Crimestoppers, to help keep our communities safe.

Help and Advice

Anyone who is worried about someone or is looking for support themselves can visit knifefree.co.uk for advice. 

If you feel threatened, unsafe or scared about becoming a victim of knife crime consider: 

  • You are more likely to come to harm if you carry a knife 
  • Walking away from threats of violence 
  • Passing anonymous information to Fearless 
  • Talk to Childline for help on 0800 11 11 or go online at childline.org.uk 
  • Contact Crimestoppers, anonymously on 0800 555 111 or visit crimestoppers-uk.org 
  • Calling 101 to speak to an officer for advice. In an emergency always call 999. 

Parents and Carers

Some young people carry a knife because they are worried about becoming a victim of knife crime. Unfortunately, carrying a knife only increases their chance of becoming hurt. 

The easiest and most common place for young people to get a knife is from the family home. If you think something isn’t quite right then consider other less obvious warning signs, including: 

  • They have become withdrawn 
  • Their school or college is reporting worrying changes in their behaviour, or their grades have suddenly dropped 
  • They have lost interest in hobbies and are vague about their movements 
  • They have changed their group of friends, perhaps to an older network 
  • They are suddenly secretive about their belongings 

There are other reasons why young people exhibit these behaviours. It might not be knife related but if you spot any of the above, talk to them. Discuss their views on knife crime, and whether they would ever consider carrying a knife. Discover if they feel safe when they go out, and if not, why not? 

Find the ideal time and location to talk to them about knife crime. Provide them with reassurance, and be patient. Remind them they do have choices, and that you are there to support them. Try to cover: 

  • carrying a knife makes you more likely to get harmed. 
  • the facts – the police can stop and search anyone they suspect to be carrying a knife. 
  • the law – it is illegal to try and buy a knife under the age of 18, and the maximum penalty for carrying a knife is 4 years in prison and an unlimited fine. An automatic prison sentence is handed to anyone convicted twice of carrying a knife. 
  • the consequences – a criminal record can change your life – you may not be offered a college or university place.  Getting a job will be made more difficult and it can even disrupt travel to some countries. 

For further advice and information, visit Knifefree.co.uk