PUNISHMENT awaits people who carry knives – that is the warning from Warwickshire Police as a week of action on knife crime begins.
The zero-tolerance warning comes as the force joins nationwide campaign Operation Sceptre, which lets people surrender weapons and raises awareness of the consequences of carrying a knife.
Ch Insp Dave Kettle from the Warwickshire safer neighbourhood teams said: “The main message we are trying to get across is ‘think twice before you carry a knife’.
“When people carry a knife they take a conscious decision to do so and it is a decision that could impact on the rest of their lives. Please don’t take the risk.”
He added people carrying knives could get a four-year prison sentence and a criminal record, ruin their employment prospects or chances of going to university, or be banned from travelling to some countries, including the United States.
Residents will be able to surrender their blades at police stations in Leamington, Rugby, Stratford and Nuneaton from today (Monday September 16) until the following Sunday (September 22).
Those handing in knives will not face prosecution for carrying them, and will not have to leave any personal details.
But police will investigate and seek to prosecute if officers suspect a weapon has been used in a crime.
Ch Insp Kettle added: “Fortunately, we don’t have a big knife crime problem in Warwickshire.
“However, on a national scale we too regularly see the devastating consequences of carrying a knife.
“This is why we are supporting this campaign. We want to ensure Warwickshire remains a safe county and everyone can play their part in ensuring this happens.
“Every knife that is handed in at a Warwickshire Police Station has the potential to safe a life.”