Our country is now facing a national emergency over knife crime.
The unprovoked killings at the weekend of innocent teenagers Jodie Chesney, 17, in Romford and Yousef Makki, also 17, in Cheshire are tragic indicators of the blood-soaked carnage that has engulfed our once well-ordered society.
Metropolitan Police Jodie Chesney, 17, was stabbed to death in Romford on Friday night
These horrific deaths are just the latest in a growing catalogue of brutality that has seen the overall total of violent offences rise by a fifth in the last year alone.
Only yesterday it was revealed that there has been a 93 per cent increase over the last five years in the number of children treated for stab wounds. Similarly, knifepoint robberies by teenagers have gone up by 50 per cent since 2016.
It’s no coincidence that there are now 20,000 fewer police on the streets than there were in 2010.
Those reductions have led to a wholesale withdrawal from the streets, leaving too many offenders free to act without any fear about being caught.
In the last decade, despite rising crime, the number of arrests has halved, while the total of charges and summons has dropped by 26 per cent since 2015.
PA:Press Association Private schoolboy Yousef Makki, who dreamed of becoming a heart surgeon, was knifed to death in a posh Manchester village
Staggering stats of bloodbath Britain
More police, tougher sentences
As a first step, there must be a reversal in the huge cuts to police personnel, which have seen the number of officers fall by 20,000 since 2010.
But more police will achieve nothing if punishments are not made harsher.
At present, a culture of leniency prevails so that the enfeebled justice system provides neither safety to the public nor deterrence against criminals.
Ray Collins – The Sun Jodie’s mum lays flowers in memory of her daughter
Despite all the talk of crackdowns, the average custodial sentence for possession of a knife or an offensive weapon in 2017 was just 7.5 months.
Disturbingly, it was reported at the end of last year that 40 per cent of criminals caught with a knife are spared jail, in direct contradiction of the law passed in 2015 which was meant to require judges to imprison repeat offenders.Excuses and empty speeches from our politicians
Yet the official response to this tidal wave of savagery has been pathetic. Instead of showing resolution, our politicians have made excuses and empty speeches.
Typical is the increasingly unimpressive Home Secretary Sajid Javid. As he bustles from one panic-stricken meeting to another, he screeches in desperation that it is vital “we unite to stop this senseless violence”, but he provides no concrete action plan.
AP:Associated Press Home Secretary Sajid Javid has been able to come up with a comprehensive plan of how to tackle the crime wave
Even worse is the clueless Sadiq Khan, the Mayor of London, in whose city so much of the mayhem occurs.
Like so many left-wingers, Khan ridiculously pretends that more juvenile activities are the answer.
After a spate of killings last November, he declared that “we’ve got to give young people constructive things to do, investing in youth centres, youth workers and youth clubs,” as if thugs are driven to murderous butchery by lack of access to table tennis or football.
The argument is not only frivolous and immoral, but it was also demolished by an incident in south London a fortnight ago, when a man was stabbed to death – in a Brixton youth club.
MET POLICE Glendon Spence, 23, was fatally stabbed in a Brixton youth club
AFP or licensors Sadiq Khan announced a public health approach to tackling serious violence last September
Just as idiotic is Khan’s policy, inevitably taken up by the cowardly Government, that street violence should be treated a “public health” question rather that a criminal justice problem.
This isn’t an infectious disease
It is absurd to portray crime as a kind of contagion or infectious disease.
Such an approach takes away the responsibility of knife-wielding or gun-toting brutes for their actions.
It is a fad that portrays them as the victims of society who deserve support rather than punishment.
The same sort of hand-wringing nonsense can be seen in the claims from the politically correct brigade that violence is result of poverty, discrimination and inequality, despite the fact that Britain is one of the richest, most tolerant, and open countries in the world.
Reuters Police forensics officers search the area near to where 17-year-old Jodie Chesney was killed
Our politicians need to get real and this means the Government has to become much tougher about policing and prison sentences.
But simply increasing police numbers is not enough. Expanded forces have to focus on genuine crimes, not waste their time on surveillance of the internet and frivolous, politicised spats on Twitter.
The Metropolitan Police boasts that it has 900 officers dealing with so-called “hate crime.” Those officers would be far better deployed on the streets than tackling faceless social media trolls.
The state also has far too much crime-related bureaucracy, which swallows valuable resources.
Typically, Sadiq Khan spends £1.7 million-a-year on 109 pen-pushers at his grandly titled “Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime”. That sum could fund 233 constables on the beat.
Reuters A police officer near to where Jodie was killed on Friday in Romford
CommentTREVOR KAVANAGH Flawed Brexit, then dignifed Therexit — price of ‘success’ is PM departure CommentTHE SUN SAYS Tory MPs need to be careful endorsing any delay to Brexit which could be fatal CommentTONY PARSONS Thanks to Rudd, the selfish Ayatollah of Remain, the EU will get their way CommentJULIA LOPEZ MP Jodie Chesney’s murder was so senseless that it defies any understanding CommentKARREN BRADY You’re in for a treat with Celebrity Apprentice — it’s worth the ten-year wait OWEN PATERSON If May delivers Brexit in full and on time she’ll win back Tory MPs’ loyalty
Softness is now the hallmark of the courts.
One recent study by the think tank Civitas showed that just over a third of defendants convicted of violent offences are handed custodial sentences, while even half of those with 11 to 14 convictions avoid prison.
This destructive experiment in leniency must end. In the face of rising crime, determination, not buck-passing, is the only solution.
You only need to look at the anguish of Jodie Chesney’s mum, laying flowers for her dead daughter, to see why this must happen now.
Jodie Chesney stabbing – Home Secretary vows to act as heartbroken relatives of stabbed teen visit scene of ‘senseless killing’