Wigan police crack down on knife crime

A Wigan man has been brought to justice as part of a police crackdown on knife crime in the borough.

Warren Anderton, 49, from Scholes, pleaded guilty to possessing an offensive weapon in a public place and was sentenced to 20 weeks in prison.

His arrest was one of many during Operation Sycamore.

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Officers from Greater Manchester Police’s Wigan District worked collaboratively with local partners as part of a knife crime day of action, which focused on reducing knife and serious violent crime across the borough.

Warren AndertonWarren Anderton
Warren Anderton

Joined by the Community Resilience, Criminal Justice, CCTV units, Housing, The National Probation Service, NHS, Targeted Youth Service and the drug and alcohol recovery service We Are with You, patrols conducted various activity throughout the day.

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Over the course of the operation, seven people were arrested, with three of those relating specifically to knife or weapon-related offences. The additional arrests were for a range of crimes including; the supply of class A drugs and breach of a restraining order.

The force conducted knife sweeps, high-visibility patrols in hot spot areas, warrants and a number of stop and searches; all of which contributed to the day’s positive results.

Police search as part of Operation SycamorePolice search as part of Operation Sycamore
Police search as part of Operation Sycamore

Trained officers along with partners, also visited the addresses of a number of young people who were suspected of being involved in criminality - mainly the possession knives or weapons.

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As part of the visits, police highlighted the implications and consequences of carrying a knife or weapon to both the young person and their parent/guardian, and ensured that the individual doesn't have access to any other weapons.

They also provided officers and partners with an understanding of the motivations behind the young person’s actions; from which they established whether the individual or the wider family, had any needs which required specialist support, or whether appropriate safeguarding action needed to be taken.

Working alongside an NHS knife trauma lead and a senior trauma surgeon, Wigan’s School Engagement Officer delivered an anti-knife session at the youth zone, focusing on the devastating impact of knife crime.

The session was an important component, as increasing awareness and educating young people on the dangers and consequences of knife crime, can serve as a preventative measure, and in turn, reduce the number of knife-related incidents.

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Sgt Steve Hanley, from GMP's Wigan District, said: “This was a successful day for the district in addressing the issue of knife crime. However, it is important to highlight that our commitment to tackling serious violence and knife crime goes beyond this dedicated day.

"Every day, officers are working hard reduce the number of knives on our streets.

“I hope that our continued commitment and actions demonstrate that we will not tolerate knife crime and acts of violence within our communities. However, we know there is still work to be done to ensure people don’t feel the need to carry a knife or weapon.

"We will continue to work with partners and the community, and policing areas we know have issues and target those responsible for violence.

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“It’s important to stress that the public also have a vital role in tackling knife crime, so our ask is that you be our extra eyes and ears. If you know someone is carrying a weapon or is involved in knife crime, then tell us. It could help save a life."

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