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[30 SEPT 98] COMMUNITY NEWS
Weapons Amnesty In Coventry

Coventry police has launched a new drive to rid the city streets of illegal weapons. Officers will tomorrow officially launch a three month long weapons amnesty. People will be urged to get rid of their unauthorised knives by putting them into special bins no questions asked.

It is the longest ever weapons amnesty in the UK and police hope to net hundreds of illegal weapons. Superintendent Jim McGinty, commander of Little Park Street Operational Command Unit, said he hoped people would use the next three months to ‘bin their blades.’

He said:

‘’The amnesty will make our city a safer place. One serious injury avoided makes all our efforts worthwhile. I urge anyone who has possession of such a weapon to bin it.’’

The police has joined forces with Coventry City council to make sure this campaign is a success. The council has provided specially adapted and secure bins at 12 sites across Coventry where people can get rid of their weapons. All the weapons will then be destroyed.

Councillor Colleen Fletcher, chair of the Community Action Against Crime Partnership, will be at a special launch tomorrow to mark the beginning of the amnesty. She said:

‘’We welcome this important development of the weapons amnesty initiative and see this as an excellent example of partnership working in action. Our ability as a council to provide the wherewithal for the police to collect these weapons is a very practical contribution to removing knives and other weapons from the streets of Coventry.’’

Coventry police ran a similar campaign in 1995 after two teenagers, aged 16 and 18, died after being stabbed in a city nightclub. It proved a great success but Coventry police hope that the 1998 campaign, which will run for longer than any amnesty in the country ever has, will be even more successful.

The officer co-ordinating the amnesty is PC Enda Hughes. He said:

‘’We are urging anyone who carries a knife, or parents who think their children may be carrying or hiding weapons, to use this opportunity to get rid of them for good.’’

The brightly coloured amnesty bins can be found in the following places:

Pool Meadow Bus Station, Fleet House in Corporation Street, Wellington Street car park in Hillfelds, Jardine Crescent shopping centre in Tile Hill, Crampers Fields in Coundon, Coventry Waste Reduction Unit in London Road, Clay Lane car park in Stoke, B&Q in Brandon Road, Binley, Jubilee Crescent Shopping Centre in Radford, Holbrooks Lane in Holbrooks and Bell Green Shopping Centre in Bell Green.
   

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CWN / Community / News / 30 Sep 98 / Weapons Amnesty In Coventry

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