May calls urgent meetings on knife crime amid row over police numbers

May calls urgent meetings on knife crime amid row over police numbers

Police officer numbers in England and Wales have dropped by more than 20,000 since 2010, while levels of violent crime have risen in recent years, and Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson said the military would be "ready to help" play a part in tackling knife crime.

Home Secretary Sajid Javid will chair a meeting of police chiefs on Wednesday, including chief constables from the areas most affected by knife crime.

Thornton's comments come after Theresa May dismissed that there was a link between police numbers and the reduction of knife crime.

Senior officers from the Metropolitan Police, Merseyside, Greater Manchester, West Midlands, South Wales, South Yorkshire and West Yorkshire attended the meeting, as did representatives of the National Crime Agency and National Police Chiefs' Council.

"We've agreed that by the end of the week we'll set out the scale of the investment required", she said.

The government has already said it will consider the public health approach to knife crime that is seen as the cornerstone of Scotland's success in dealing with the issue.

He blames cuts to police forces for making the problem worse.

She posted a photograph on Instagram with fellow scouts at 10 Downing Street on Remembrance Day past year, with the caption: "I'm basically famous now. this was such a good opportunity and so much fun".

Mrs May parised the "excellent" work of police in dealing with knife crime in Scotland.


It comes after the fatal stabbing of 17-year-old Jodie Chesney in an east London park on Friday night in what her family branded a "totally random and unprovoked attack".

Mrs May's official spokesman said the PM told Cabinet that while the Government was already taking action, their deaths were "a stark reminder that there is more to do to tackle violence on our streets".

An entry posted on the Met Police Twitter accounts for Redbridge, Havering and Barking & Dagenham said: "The investigation team into this tragedy are appealing for calm at this time, they are working tirelessly into finding the offender (s) who have committed this crime".

"The public are losing faith in our ability to control our streets and they need to see and they need to feel a step change in our response to public safety concerns", she said.

"This has to stop, there are too many young people having their lives cut short by needless violence".

Dr Tim Bateman, Reader in Youth Justice at the University of Bedfordshire, has said "getting tough on young people who carry knives is misguided and unlikely to address the problem".

Figures released in February showed the number of fatal stabbings in England and Wales past year - 285 - was the highest since records began in 1946.

Figures published last month by the Office of National Statistics showed that there were 285 fatal stabbings in England and Wales past year - the highest since records began in 1946.

She said: "I agree that there is some link between violent crime on the streets and police numbers, of course there is".

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