Knives 'being taken into school by pupils' claims Barnsley councillor

A Barnsley Police chief says there are 20-25 knife crime incidents in Barnsley per month, as a councillor says knives are being taken into school by pupils.

Wednesday, 9th February 2022, 2:05 pm
Updated Wednesday, 9th February 2022, 2:48 pm

Superintendent Paul Ferguson of the Barnsley District Senior Command Team was questioned by councillors on the overview and scrutiny committee about how the force is tackling crime in the borough at their last meeting on February 8.

Supt. Ferguson told councillors that there are 20-25 knife crime incidents in Barnsley per month on average, which includes finding a knife on a person during a stop and search.

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Over the last three months, the average is about 20 to 25 knife crimes in Barnsley."

"Those numbers are a product of what we find when we got to stop and search somebody, and we find somebody carrying a knife," Supt. Ferguson told the meetings.

"This is a mixture of what is reactive, what happens and what we cause by finding it.

"Over the last three months, the average is about 20 to 25 knife crimes in Barnsley."

Chief Supt James Abdy, Barnsley's new district commander, told the meeting that knife crime in Barnsley is relatively low in comparison to other places.

He said: "It is something that we take very, very seriously, we actively monitor any sort of trends or patterns.

"We will do targeted police operations with partners around that particular problem.

"If you look at the issue more widely across the country, and in South Yorkshire, there is a general rise in knife crime throughout the last 12 months. We're not experiencing that in Barnsley."

Councillor Charlie Wraith MBE, Labour member for Cudworth, told the meeting that he would like to see ‘more work’ in schools to prevent knife crime.

Councillor Karen Dyson, Labour member for Stairfoot added: "In the local academy, there is pupils in there with knives, so we need to go into the local academy and see what can we do."

Ch Supt. Abdy added: "We work with the violence reduction unit and our neighbourhood officers to get them into schools, and see what support and advice we can give to reduce that level."

Paul Brannan, head of safer communities at Barnsley Council said that the Violence Reduction Unit is working with young people to provide targeted intervention in schools.

"In terms of the information you've provided us about the academy, we need to take that away, we need to consider what we do with that now."