Huge haul of guns, knives and ammunition handed in to police in Leeds as part of weapons crackdown

Temporary assistant chief constable Angela Williams, of West Yorkshire Police, with some of the haul.
Temporary assistant chief constable Angela Williams, of West Yorkshire Police, with some of the haul.
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A huge haul of guns, knives and ammunition has been handed to police as part of a weapons crackdown.

More than 150 bladed weapons and 80 guns were handed in at police stations across West Yorkshire – including two AK47 rifles – during the latest weapons surrender.

The 10-day initiative was launched at the Royal Armouries in Leeds last month and aims to get potentially dangerous weapons off the city’s streets.

It gained the support of stabbing victim Vincent Uzomah from Moortown, who was working as a science teacher at a Bradford school when he was stabbed in the stomach by a teenage boy last year.

Temporary assistant chief constable Angela Williams, of West Yorkshire Police, said: “Some of these weapons are clearly very dangerous.

“Now they will not find their way on to the streets of our communities.

Vincent Uzomah, of Moortown, who was working as a teacher in Bradford when he was stabbed by a teenage boy. Picture: Tony Johnson.

Vincent Uzomah, of Moortown, who was working as a teacher in Bradford when he was stabbed by a teenage boy. Picture: Tony Johnson.

“They will not be used for criminal activity or to hurt or at worse kill someone.

“While we continue to maintain a low number of recorded crimes involving guns, knives and other weapons, we take it extremely seriously which is why initiatives like this are held.

“Weapons surrenders are very important and even though we have had these handed in we cannot afford to be and will not be complacent.

“Over the weekend, for example, we had a firearms discharge in Huddersfield which is currently being investigated.”

Mr Uzomah, 51, was working as a teacher at Dixons Kings Academy in Bradford in June last year when he was stabbed.

He said: “The response has been very impressive.

“Well done to those who responded to this noble call and surrendered their weapons.”

Mark Burns-Williamson, West Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner, said: “I am pleased we have had so many weapons handed in.

“This surrender has given individuals a perfect opportunity to ensure the weapons are disposed of safely and ensures we are doing all we can to keep our communities safe and preventing potential crimes of the future.”

The campaign urged members of the public to hand in firearms, ammunition and knives to avoid them getting into the wrong hands and ending up on the city’s streets.

People were given a safe place to dispose of any weapons they had and would not face prosecution for possessing the weapons and could remain anonymous. The initiative was supported by the Save a Life, Surrender Your Knife campaign, which aims to reduce the number of weapons on the streets to make communities safer.

Dr Edward Impey, master of the Royal Armouries, said: “We are pleased [...] that it has generated such a strong response from the local community.”

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