COUNCILLOR Mark Dearey says media reports that he say he was calling for a knife amnesty were taken out of context and says that such a move “wouldn’t make a blind bit of difference” to the people who stabbed Terry Murray.
Mr Murray was attacked in a brutal assault which saw him rushed to hospital with serious injuries to his face, neck and arms.
However Cllr Dearey does not believe a national amnesty would make any impact.
“There was a knife amnesty in London in 2007, and 90k knives were handed in. As I understand it initially there was a drop, but the after a relatively short length of time they increase back to the level that they were at.
“I don’t believe that kind of broad stroke action would make a difference. The people who stabbed Mr Murray are beyond caring. They wouldn’t pay a blind bit of attention.”
Cllr Dearey believes a community level approach to the carrying of knives could have an impact.
“I have become aware of young men carrying knives, someone of them very decent young men. But unfortunately these young men are making some unwise decisions regarding knives.”
“The message we have to get across is that you are more likely to be stabbed if you are carrying a knife then if you aren’t.”
A community policing approach where a dialogue could be set up between young males in relation to carrying weapons, is the way to tackle the issue according to Cllr Dearey.
“This is a relative small cohort of young men who are carrying these weapons. I’ve seen them myselves in the area around the quay, simply showing them to friends and it is an issue that has been discussed at council.”
A recent report into knife crime by Irish Medical Journal, shows that between 2005 and 2010, emergency staff dealt with 2,472 knife-related attacks, 15 per cent of the total number of assaults; 93 per cent of knife victims were male; 18 per cent of those who died in hospital (73 in total) from assault suffered knife wounds; and knife victims were three-and-a-half times more likely to need intensive care unit (ICU) care.
“The lack of a reduction in knife crime together with the greater need for ICU care and the higher in-hospital mortality rate among those victims of knife crime are a great concern and indicate there is an urgent need to tackle knife crime among young males,” said the report.