London knife crime: Your views on how to curb the capital’s knife crime epidemic

Knife crime is one of the toughest challenges faced by Metropolitan Police in the capital as growing numbers of young people are carrying and using knives.

The dangers are well known, with 18 teenagers dying last year in knife crime incidents in London.

The Office for National Statistics data showed a 47% increase in knife crime in London in the 12 months leading up to October 2017 compared with the previous year.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan announced on Wednesday (January 17) that he was providing an extra £15 million to the Met budget to tackle the knife crime epidemic.

We shared the story on our Facebook page and asked readers to suggest ways knife crime could be tackled by police; here are some of the best responses.

Tougher sentencing

The majority of responses made mention of jail time and harsher sentencing for those carrying knives, as well as those using them in crime.

Readers John Chaundy, Mitchell Harrison, Francis Ann Bell, Dave Garmory, Davina Hunter, Naomi Schumacher and Pam Cooper all made mention of tougher sentencing as the cornerstone to any new policy to tackle knife crime.

Paul Coules put forward the concept of a six month minimum sentence for absolutely anyone caught with a knife.

“Anyone found carrying a knife will be given an automatic minimum six month sentence and they will not get out one minute early,” said Paul.

“If they are arrested having used a knife in a violent crime then they will get a minimum five year sentence and will not get out one minute early.

“The important thing is that a ‘minimum’ sentence has to be set to prevent judges who ‘feel sorry for them’ from handing out soft sentences.”