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Monday, 21 February, 2000, 10:01 GMT
Police step up knives campaign

A collection of knives A range of weapons has been recovered


A 48-hour crackdown by Strathclyde Police has resulted in another 39 arrests and the seizure of a range of weapons.

The operation over the weekend was part of the Spotlight Initiative on safer streets.

More than 70 officers from specialised units based at the force's headquarters in Glasgow supplemented hundreds of teams of divisional officers in the intelligence-led sweep across Scotland's largest force area.


Every parent should take the time, now, to speak to their sons and daughters before another tragedy occurs
John Orr
Licensed premises, where nearly one in five of all violent crimes are committed, were the subject of special scrutiny with officers inspecting 2,506 establishments.

In all, 26 knives, including lock knives, kitchen knives and machetes were recovered in the two days.

Another 18 offensive weapons ranging from pick axe handles and Chinese fighting sticks to buckled belts and batons were also seized.

Catalogue of incidents

Since the initiative was launched on 1 February, more than 300 weapons have been collected by the police.

The incidents include:

  • A nine-year-old boy in Clydebank allegedly carrying a knife with an eight-inch blade

  • Eight boys and girls between nine and 14 in Lanarkshire apprehended by police for serious public disorder at night

  • A 23-year-old man arrested after a fight in an Ayrshire car park, allegedly with a four-foot long metal pole hidden in his clothes

  • In Glasgow, a 14-year-old boy held for allegedly being in possession of a three-foot long sword

  • A 55-year-old man arrested apprehended after allegedly threatening a bus driver with a nine-inch blade knife

  • In East Kilbride a 25-year-old man allegedly found in possession of a three-and-a-half inch long broken bottle. The man had earlier been in licensed premises where he is alleged to have stated that he was planning to kill a police officer.


During the first two weeks of the initiative 289 violent crimes were recorded by Strathclyde Police with 45% currently detected.

Common assaults numbered 815 with nearly 77% (626) solved. The number of public disorder offences totalled 2119 of which more than three-quarters were breaches of the peace.

John Orr John Orr: "Parents have responsibility"
Chief Constable John Orr said: "We know that there is a very small minority of the population carrying knives and other weapons and this is being depleted further by this initiative to make our streets safer.

"What is extremely disheartening is the number of young people some of them literally primary aged school children - who we are finding in possession of weapons which could result in serious injury or even death.

"Parents have an undisputed responsibility for knowing what their children are doing, who they are with as well as warning them of the seriousness and dangers of becoming involved in knife culture.

"Every parent should take the time, now, to speak to their sons and daughters before another tragedy occurs."

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See also:
05 Feb 00 |  Scotland
Police target knife carriers
05 Jul 99 |  UK
Police 'sadness' over weapons haul
03 Dec 99 |  Scotland
High-tech help on car crime
23 Jun 99 |  UK
Second massive heroin haul

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