VIDEO: Over 40 arrested in knife crime operation in South Yorkshire
Over 40 arrests were made in a week-long crackdown on knife crime in South Yorkshire, withÂ 68Â blades also seized.
Officers made the 44 arrests as part of Operation Sceptre, which ranÂ from Tuesday, September 18 in response to a national increase in knife crime.
POLICE: Knife found hidden in bushes in SheffieldÂ city centreÂ There were a number of raids across the county, high visibility police patrols and officers also used knife arches in a bid to root out those carryingÂ weapons onÂ the streets.
Officers also carried out a number of land searches to look for discarded or hidden weapons.
Detective Superintendent Una Jennings, responsible for South Yorkshire Police's response to armed criminality, said: "Our officers and staff have worked incredibly hard during Operation Sceptre and thanks to their proactive approach, we have seized nearly 70 knives and removed them from the streets of South Yorkshire.
'We carried out 63 test purchase operations in partnership with Trading Standards with retailers across South Yorkshire, many of whom passed the checks and refused to sell knives to under 18s.
'Of those that failed, they have received warnings or the premises have taken positive action to ensure that this does not happen in future.'
She added: 'There were 20 weapons sweeps or land searches carried out across the force, with 25 knives being recovered from those searches alone.'
Detectives launched a murder investigation in Sheffield during the knife crime operation after Fahim Hersi, aged 22, of Broomhall, was stabbed to death during a fight outside the cinema at Valley Centertainment last Friday night.
Det Supt Jennings added: 'The upsetting and tragic loss of another life as a result of knife crime in Sheffield last weekend, while Operation Sceptre was running, has undoubtedly affected our communities and has shaken many of us within the force.
'This serious incident has only strengthened our resolve to continue with our proactive approach to tackling knife crime and progressing our long-term knife crime strategy in partnership with local authorities, health and other agencies.
'It is vitally important that we continue to work together to address the issue of knife crime and make our young people feel safer and, if they are considering carrying a knife, understand why that is and educate them away from this highly dangerous path.
'I'm grateful for the support of our partner agencies, schools and the communities of South Yorkshire as we continue our efforts to tackle this devastating crime.'
The murder was one of five knife attacks in SheffieldÂ in the space of 48 hours last weekend.
InÂ the early hours of Saturday morning a 43-year-old woman was slashed across her neck during a disturbance outside a house in Kyle Crescent, Southey Green and the early hours of Sunday, two men '“Â aged 29 and 31 '“Â were stabbed in another attack in Walkley Lane,Â Hillsborough.Â
In the fourth attackÂ outside Del's convenience store, High Street, Swallownest, an 18-year-old man was stabbed in his hands and leg and 10 minutes later, in theÂ fifth incident, a 21-year-old man was stabbed in his arm and ribs on the car park close to McColl's convenienceÂ store,Â Worksop Road, Aston.
Anyone with information on those who carry knives should call South Yorkshire Police on 101 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.