Knife purchase operation puts Northampton shops to the test
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Checks by Northamptonshire Police to make sure shops are not breaking the law by selling knives to under-18s have shown most visited are operating responsibly.
Carried out over the weekend of October 2 and 3, a test purchase operation organised by the Northampton Neighbourhood Policing Team (NPT) saw three young volunteers from Northamptonshire Emergency Services Cadets visit 12 shops across Northampton to attempt to buy knives.
As the cadets were under 18, nine shops rightly refused to sell them any bladed articles.
Of the three shops where under-age purchases were possible, the shop assistants involved were given words of advice and all agreed to a conditional caution and a £50 fine.
Referrals have also been made to Trading Standards so follow-up checks can be carried out at each store in future.
PC Alastair Trasler-Brown, of Northampton NPT, said: “Tackling knife crime is a matter of priority for the Force, and making sure young people don’t have illegal access to knives and other bladed weapons plays an important part in this.
“This operation demonstrates the breadth of responsibility that exists in helping reduce young people’s access to weapons and reduce incidents of knives being used to threaten or harm others.
“It’s really positive the majority of stores we visited are doing the right and lawful thing in refusing to sell knives and other bladed items to under-18s.
“If anyone has concerns that a shop is breaking the law in selling bladed articles to those aged under 18, please report this to us via our website at www.northants.police.uk/ro.”
Find help and support if you have concerns about knife crime here. Report non-emergency crime to 101 or visit www.northants.police.uk/RO. In an emergency always call 999.