Knife amnesty: haul of weapons dumped

DOZENS of blades have been handed in under a knife amnesty running in Hailsham.

Samurai swords and kitchen knives are among the items brought to the police station, bins and council offices in the two week amnesty which ended this week.

The scheme was set up to help educate young people after the death of 25-year-old Darren Croxton who died from knife wounds in January and the stabbing of a pensioner in the summer.

Officers have also brought the bins to street meetings aimed at spreading anti-knife messages to the public and said 20 knives were handed over in 20 minutes when they set up a stand in Bowley Road last week.

Police said one woman brought out a samurai sword which was decorative and that many people were simply taking the opportunity to dispose of household blades.

Sergeant Howard Nevill said, “We do not expect there to be that many knives in Hailsham in the first place.

“We are not getting inundated.

“We are looking to give the opportunity for people who might be thinking of crime in relation to knives to get rid of them now.”

Officers have also given talks at Hailsham Community College to encourage youngsters not to turn to violence to solve problems and not to risk getting involved with knives.

When the amnesty ends the scheme will switch to encouraging young people to report people who carry or use knives through the Fearless project run by anonymous phoneline Crimestoppers.

Officers have also used metal detecting wands in the town centre in the evenings to deter people from taking knives out.