Police weapons sweeps in Bedford discover seven hidden knives

Police have found seven knives in Bedford during weapons sweeps on the third day of Operation Sceptre, a week-long operation to tackle knife crime.
Police have found seven knives in Bedford during weapons sweeps on the third day of Operation Sceptre, a week-long operation to tackle knife crime.

Police have found seven knives in Bedford during weapons sweeps on the third day of Operation Sceptre.

Officers from the county force were out on Wednesday (Sept 19) searching open spaces and looking for weapons that had been discarded or hidden for future use.

Along with the seven knives, officers found two crowbars, a hammer, a screwdriver, a used can of pepper spray and a bag of suspected cannabis.

Inspector John Nichols said: “This is a fantastic result for the first day of weapons sweeps. This may cause concern to the community, but I hope that shows why operations and activity like this are important. I hope our community are reassured that we have recovered so many weapons and taken them off the streets. Tackling knife crime is a priority for the force, and we run similar operations throughout the year.

“I also hope this sends a strong message to people carrying knives. If you’re hiding weapons we will find them, and then we will find you and bring you to justice.”

The force is running a full week of activity as part of Operation Sceptre, a national week-long operation which is supported by forces across the country. On Monday officers and PCSOs held community engagement events in Luton and Bedford town centres, speaking to the public about knife crime and encouraging them to report information about knife crime in their area.

Throughout the week, officers will carry out activity including high visibility patrols in knife crime hotspot areas and engagement with schools.

There will be further weapons sweeps this week, and community weapons sweeps in Bedford and Luton on Saturday and Sunday (Sept 22 and 23).

To report concerns about knife crime, call police on 101, or call the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. In an emergency always dial 999.