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EDITIONS
Friday, 6 September, 2002, 13:55 GMT 14:55 UK
Teenage victim's knife plea
Scott and Mark Breslin
Scott was paralysed from the neck down
Can crime be cracked?

On 18 September the BBC is planning to give extensive coverage to people who have done their bit to tackle crime in a series of special programmes and features.

Crime touches the lives of thousands of people every day, its effects can be seen across the whole of the United Kingdom.

But the BBC's Crime Day - on the internet, radio and television - will show that there are people and communities who are managing to fight back against the criminals.

Click here to find out how you can take part in Crime Day


Scott Breslin is one such person.

The 17-year-old was paralysed from the neck down in an unprovoked knife attack in Glasgow.

Scott agreed to have his case highlighted by BBC Scotland in the hope that it will help to counter the culture of knife crime in many cities and towns north of the border.


Scott Breslin is living testimony to the scourge of knife crime in Scottish society.

The 17-year-old was set upon by youths on a Saturday night as he walked through a housing estate, or "scheme", to his home in the south side of Glasgow.

Scott was stabbed in the neck and paralysed from the neck down.

The teenager did not know his attackers and was unlucky to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Mark Breslin and Scott in wheelchair
Mark Breslin wants tougher sentences
Scott, who is now fighting to come to terms with his disability, said what happened to him could happen to any young person.

He said: "It's a bit dodgy going into a scheme now because you're scared you will be jumped."

"Knives are the problem. Young men carrying knives and it happens all the time now."

His father Mark recalled the terrible night when Scott's life and the lives of his family were turned upside down.

He said: "I got a phone call on the Saturday night, it would have been about half past midnight, just going into Sunday morning, from the Southern General Hospital just saying Scott was there and he was the victim of a knife attack.

"At that particular time, the staff didn't even know but now he's been diagnosed as having his spinal cord severed which mean's he's paralysed from the neck down and he's no chance of recovery from it."


They should be clamping down more on people carrying knives and they should be doing more to get across the message about what can actually happen

Mark Breslin
Two young men were convicted for his attempted murder, one jailed for 10 years and the other for four.

However, Mr Breslin said they do not have to serve the sentence his son must endure and more must be done to stop knife crime in Scotland.

He said: "They should be clamping down more on people carrying knives and they should be doing more to get across the message about what can actually happen when you carry a knife.

"At the end of their jail sentences they're going to walk out of there, Scott won't be walking again.

Person holding knife
Knife crime is on the increase
"I'd like to see a similar term of imprisonment for the people who did that."

Scott has become another victim in Scotland's grim plague of violent assault and stabbings.

The latest figures have revealed that convictions for knife crime in Scotland have risen sharply.

They showed that convictions for carrying an offensive weapon rose from 227 in 1996 to 1,137 in 2000.

The number of people convicted of having a weapon with a blade or point in a public place leapt from 317 to 1,101.


How you can take part in the BBC's Crime Day

We want to hear other stories of how crime has been cracked - have you and your friends started a group or campaign to improve the quality of life on your estate or neighbourhood and succeeded in bringing down crime?

Call us on 08700 100 900 to tell us your story.

Or write to Crime Crackers, BBC Scotland, Broadcasting House, Queen Margaret Drive, Glasgow G12 8DG.

Alternatively use this form to e-mail your response.

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Disclaimer: The BBC will put up as many of your comments as possible but we cannot guarantee that all e-mails will be published. The BBC reserves the right to edit comments that are published.
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See also:

22 Aug 02 | Scotland
15 Aug 02 | Scotland
28 Jul 02 | Scotland
25 Jul 02 | Scotland
27 Jun 02 | Scotland
14 May 02 | Scotland
03 May 02 | Scotland
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