Yorkshire businesses under watch after illegal sales of knives

By Sophie Banks


After a business in Wakefield sold a knife to a young person, shops have been told that the police will be watching them to make sure it doesn’t happen again.

Wakefield Police set up a major test purchase of retailers across the District.

Police cadets aged 13 and 16 visited a number of stores in the area as part of an ongoing programme to tackle knife crime.

At a store in Wakefield, the pair were sold a large kitchen knife by a member of staff who, shortly afterwards, was informed he had failed a police test purchase.

The male was advised by the police that his store would be monitored.

Local sales assistant, Diane, said: “I think it is necessary that they are asked for ID as it would reduce youths getting involved in crime.”

Legally, knives with non-folding blades over three inches long should not be sold to anyone under the age of 18.

West Yorkshire Police took part in February’s national Knife Crime Week of Action, which saw officers carry out a number of test purchases and community engagement events across the region.

Inspector Helen Brear of Wakefield District Police, said: “It is positive news that of the 14 retailers visited by our test purchasers, all but one were vigilant and refused the sale of knives to the young people.

“It is disappointing that one Wakefield retailer sold a knife to our test purchasers however, and we have now issued a community resolution to the staff member responsible.

According to latest figures, Yorkshire has seen a 45% increase in knife crime in the seven years up to 2017.

Despite recent events, London has seen a decrease of 12% in the last year.

Although the latest statistics show a significant increase in knife crime, a reduction in the amount of knives being sold to young individuals in Yorkshire could benefit these figures enourmously.


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