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Radical Ideologies Fuel Youth Knife-Crimes in West Midlands



West Midlands

The reports of knife-crimes against teenagers and younger children in the West Midlands have been escalating absurdly. Last week, a “weapons surrender bin” opened in the Hockley area of Birmingham, revealed a range of blades, including kitchen knives and the Southeast Asian curved knives: Karambits.

The regional Police Federation has warned that the murder rate in the West Midlands — 46 killings so far this year — is at the same level as the epidemic of deadly violence in London.

The latest fatal stabbing of a 16-year-old — Jaydon Washington James, who was killed because of his postcode — in Coventry on Saturday extended the number of knife killings of youngsters to six this year.

According to the media reports, five out of the six killed this year were from a black and minority ethnic background. Besides, the youngest were 8 and 11 years old.

Katie Wright, an A&E consultant and co-lead of children’s emergency department at Birmingham’s Heartlands hospital, said, “We are alarmed by the sheer number and we are alarmed by the ages of those involved.”

She informed that an 11-year-old from the recent patients carried a knife, as he felt unsafe in his area.

A landmark 2017 report on gangs and violence in the West Midlands stated that it was intricate to explain the rise in both gun and knife crimes in recent years. However, it listed various reasons cited by police, community groups, former gang members and others.

According to the report, the reasons listed included– role of social media and music, mental health issues, emergence of a “new generation of gangsters” known for impulsive acts of violence, and what was referred to as the “father deficit” by some of them.

Statistics reveal that by far there have been 118 murders in London this year, which the police Federation has compared with the West Midlands as per the population sizes.

Chairman of the West Midlands Police Federation, Sgt Richard Cooke gave a sheer assessment of the police’s ability to prevent the rising rate of fatalities.

According to the government figures, since 2010 the force has lost more than 21,300 officers, amounting to 24 per cent in less than a decade.

A large number of murders are reported, as hate-motivated crimes have caused a major public concern. It’s a no hidden fact that radical sentiment in the UK is augmenting at a greater pace. Although there are multiple reasons for the rising knife-crimes and other violence acts in the country, majority of them are stoked out of hate against the minority groups.


Boris Johnson Announces Prison Funding to Curb Crime Rate



Boris Johnson

Boris Johnson has hardened his stance to curb down the crime rate and mitigate the appalling violence against police officers. Not only has he vowed to further expand police stop-and-search powers and toughen up prison sentences, he has also announced £100 million to put an end to prison crimes.

Even though some of these moves might appear to be a tougher stance than required, many MPs think that these steps might improve the ongoing crimes and violence. The Prime Minister, while repeating the statement which the home secretary Priti Patel made last week, also said that he wants the criminals to be afraid, instead of the public.

Boris Johnson announced the schemes to put an end to the violent crimes in an article on Sunday. The prime reason for publishing the article was to bring focus on the rising knife crimes and the appalling attack on the police officer with a machete.  

The attack on the police officer is not a first instance of crime against the law authorities. As per the records and new figures, violent assaults on police have increased by three times and 28 officers are being injured per day while on duty respectively.

Last year, a record 10,399 assaults were made on the police officers, leaving them injured and these figures have recorded a 32 percent jump from 7,903 recorded in 2015/16. These numbers are entirely different from the 20,578 assaults from which the officers escaped.

Tory MP David Davies in relation to the new stance of Boris Johnson on the rising crime rates and violence against law authorities, said, “These absolutely appalling figures underline the importance of much stronger prison sentences for those who commit violent crimes, especially those who attack frontline public sector workers, including police officers, in the course of their duty.”

The Prime Minister has also revealed plans to invest £2.5 billion to create 10,000 establishments to reduce the overcrowding situation of the prison. Johnson’s statement came in lieu of the announcement of recruiting over 20,000 police officers in next three years.

In the article, Johnson further stated, “We have the impression of a growing culture of insolence on the part of the thugs; and in the face of that sense of impunity – entirely misplaced – I believe the British public knows instinctively what we must do.”

“We need to come down hard on crime. That means coming down hard on criminals. We need to reverse the balance of fear. I want the criminals to be afraid – not the public,” he added.

The new hardened stance curbing the crime rate and crime against law authorities, if implemented, is surely expected to change the image of Boris Johnson as the Prime Minister.

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Tate Modern Gallery Horror: 6-yr-old French kid thrown off 10th floor



Tate Modern Gallery

On Sunday, a local teenager snatched a six-year-old French kid from his mother and threw him from the 10th floor of the Tate modern gallery over a chest-high barrier. The child crashed on the roof of the fifth floor of the gallery.

The mother of the child, who became hysterical after the incident, was on a London tour with her family. Even though the gruesome act took everyone in the premises by surprise, the teenage boy remained surprisingly calm.

As per the statement by the Metropolitan Police, the teenager will appear in Bromley Youth Court at 10 am local time. The law authorities have claimed that they have found no link between the victim and the culprit.

The latest reports suggest that the victim of the Tate Modern Gallery survived the fall of 100 ft and is in a critical but stable condition. A quick aid was provided to the victim as he was transported to the hospital in a helicopter.

The London Ambulance Service informed that it received the first call about the incident at 02:40 pm as per the local time. In a statement, a spokesperson from the emergency service said, “We sent two ambulance crews, an incident response officer, a medic in a response car and an advanced paramedic to the scene. We also dispatched London’s Air Ambulance and our Hazardous Area Response Team.”

Detective Chief Inspector John Massey, regarding the incident at the Tate Modern Gallery said, “We are providing around the clock support to the little boy’s family as they wait for more news on his condition and our priority remains to determine what led to [Sunday’s] events. We are grateful for the support of the public, some of whom detained the male arrested in the immediate aftermath of the incident.

“This was a truly shocking incident. It would have been incredibly distressing to watch, and it may be that you left Tate Modern very quickly after. If you have not yet spoken to us about what you saw, please contact us without delay.”

“It may be that this is something which has only just come back to you. If so, please still make that call to the investigation team,” he added.

Following the incident, Tate Modern Gallery was open for the visitors on Monday and witnessed a steady flow of the visitors. However, the notices were put on to notify the visitors about the fact that the viewing gallery is closed.

Occurrence of an incident like this at such a famed tourist spot has raised several questions like where the security personnel of the building were at the time of the incident and what led to such an incident, with no answers in sight.

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Linking Violent Crimes to Poverty, Sadiq Khan Set to Introduce New Policies



Sadiq Khan

Despite the continuous efforts of London Mayor Sadiq Khan and the police department, violent crimes against the youth in the capital city have only intensified.

In an interview with a media house, the Mayor correlated violent crimes such as knife crimes with poverty, quoting data from various sources.

“We have used data from a host of sources including the police, the British transport police, the NHS, the London ambulance service and others. And what this has shown is serious youth violence started going up in 2012 but it’s unarguable now there is a link between series youth violence and poverty, depravation, child in care, inequality,” Khan said.

He further went on to say, “There are still some who say that to acknowledge this link between poverty, deprivation and crime is somehow to excuse criminality and to let the criminals off the hook. I say this is dangerous rubbish.”

“There’s never any excuse for criminality. But we have to face the reality that for some young people growing up today, violence has become normalised.”

Sadiq Khan has been constantly questioned about his policies to restrain the on-going knife crimes, which have led to the death of more than 40 people this year. Earlier in February, he initiated the Violent Crime Task Force comprising of 300 policemen.

His claims have gained light at the end of school year. Therefore, it is expected that closing of schools and lack of activities to keep one busy might lead to increase in knife crimes in many cities.

The research conducted reveals that the poorer an area of the city is, the more it is prone to be the hub violent crimes. The research shows that Richmond area in London has the lowest level of youth violence and it also happens to be one of the wealthiest parts of the city.

Similarly, the Tower Hamlets in east London is one of the most deprived areas of London and as per the data, it has the highest rate of youth violence in the capital.

With the schools closing up for summer holidays, Sadiq Khan pressed upon the claims that the city council is investing £360,000 in 43 projects across the city to keep young people from getting involved in these crimes.

“It’s time for the government to acknowledge that this is a national problem that requires an urgent national solution. No more scratching around the edges. We need a proper national strategy,” he said.

With ever-increasing violent crimes engulfing the city of London, it seems that the efforts of Mayor Sadiq Khan and the authorities are not enough. However, the only question that remains is will the introduction of extra activities to reduce rate of violent crimes while the schools are closed be successful or not.

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Knife Crime: Man Jailed for Murdering on Train En Route London



Knife crime

Last updated on July 16th, 2019

A train passenger who stabbed an IT consultant after a heated exchange over aisle blocking has been jailed for life. Lee Pomeroy, 51, died after Darren Pencille, 36, in an encounter that barely lasted 25 seconds, stabbed Pomeroy for 18 times. On January 4, both the attacker and victim boarded the train between Guildford and London, and the former was knifed in front of his 14-year-old son.

The attacker, who declined to give evidence at his Old Bailey trial, agreed possessing a knife but denied murder. In fact, he claimed that he only acted in self defence against the 6ft 3in tall victim.

However, the court heard that Pencille had a history of violence. As per the available records, he had already stabbed his flat mate in the neck over some dispute in 2010, and had terrorized to kill a staff member at a mental health center last year.

Following the attacker’s conviction, British Transport Police Detective Chief Inspector Sam Blackburn exclaimed: “He’s a dangerous man. Quite clearly with his previous convictions, where he also stabbed another man in the neck, and his propensity for carrying knives, he showed his dangerous, aggressive nature and that he wasn’t afraid to use that knife on that train on January 4.”

Apart from Pencille, his girlfriend Chelsea Mitchell, who picked her boyfriend and also brought clippers and razors for him to change his look, was found guilty of assisting an offender. She was also sentenced to two years and four months in prison.

In a statement read to the court, Pomeroy’s wife Svetlana said she missed her husband “every day” and had lost her “friend, my soul mate and my guide”. She added her husband who was preparing to celebrate his 52nd birthday the day after he was killed, was bought cards and presents “he never got to see”.

Pencille’s mental health was described by his lawyers as an issue he had dealt with in the past. According to a medical report, he was hospitalized a number of times for issues between 2004-2018 and had prescribed medicine for depression, anxiety and psychotic disturbances. However, he had not taken anti-psychotic medication at the time of attack, the reports confirmed.

London has been midst knife attacks for more than a while now. Though there have been continuous questions over police’s inability to control the menace, the increased government spending, especially to avert such happenings continues to raise a lot of questions.

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Men in Black Injure Three from Acid Attacks in London



Men in Black Injure Three from Acid Attacks in London

Rising crime rate of the UK is often associated with the stabbing, but acid attacks remain a different reality to the offenses. On Friday, three men were injured with attacks suspiciously conducted using corrosive substance, in east London.

The first attack took place at Walthamstow High Street in the morning, where two men “wearing burkas” threw the substance on a market stall worker. Whereas, two other men became a victim to similar attack shortly before 7:30 p.m. at Cricketfield Road near Hackney Downs.

The 45-year-old Walthamstow victim was taken to an east London hospital for treatment, and the police believes there were no life-threatening injuries. However, a market trader stated that the man was hit in the face with a substance, which also affected his eye.

Whereas, the two victim of the second attack suffered from burns as per the police and paramedics. Aged in their 20s, the two can be seen sitting doused in water at road side in the images from the scene.

They were reportedly helped by the onlookers in the area, who poured water over their bodies in an effort to wash off the acid. Later, the victims were also taken to an east London hospital, and were reported to have no life threatening injuries after the acid attacks.

As per the reports, the police is looking for the two men in burkas, after the first attack. However, no arrests have been made yet, according to the Scotland Yard.

Following the reports of the attacks, police were called to Walthamstow High Street at around 6:30 a.m., whereas at 7:21 p.m. to Cricketfield Road.

A Met police spokesman stated, “It is alleged that the victim had been approached by two suspects, both wearing burkhas, and had the substance thrown at him before they fled in a waiting car.”

According to Acid Survivors Trust International (ASTI), the UK has one of the highest rates of acid attacks per capita across globe. In 2016, a total of 601 of such attacks were recorded, and London emerged as one of the most affected areas. The capital records more than half of the total incidents taking place within the country.

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