Two volunteers – including a member of the Warwickshire Police Cadets - joined forces with Warwickshire Trading Standards last week to carry out a test purchase knife operation across the county.
It is against the law to sell knives to under 18s and Trading Standards regularly carry out operations with the support of Warwickshire Police Cadets to check shops are abiding by this law.
The volunteers – who were 15 and 16 – went into 10 stores across the county attempting to buy knives and we’re pleased to report that they were declined on every occasion. Four of the shops visited had fallen foul of the law during a similar operation in June.
Test purchases were made in Warwick, Alcester, Southam, Rugby, Bedworth, and Hartshill.
Superintendent Lee Kemp, head of response and neighbourhood policing in Warwickshire, said: “Shop workers play a key role in helping us to keep knives off our streets and it is pleasing to see the message around the illegal sale knives to children is getting through. These types of operations are one of many tools available to us in tackling knife crime in Warwickshire and we will continue to be proactive in deterring people from carrying knives and ensuring people who do are brough to justice.”
Warwickshire County Councillor Andy Crump, Portfolio Holder for Community Safety said: “We want to stop knife crime and keep knives out of the hands of children so I'm delighted that those retailers who were visited recently followed age restricted sales guidance and didn't sell to our child volunteers.
"We will continue to work in partnership with Warwickshire Police to provide our local retailers with advice on age restricted sales and carry out these operations."
This positive news comes at the start of a week of action by Warwickshire Police as part of Operation Talkative, the force’s dedicated knife crime operation. Throughout the week the force will be encouraging local people to report any concerns they have around people carry knives in the county. All information will be developed and responded to appropriately.