Extra stop and search powers in Swarcliffe after teenager's hand chopped off in machete attack

Police have been given extra power to stop and search people in Swarcliffe after a teenager's hand was chopped off in a machete attack.

Wednesday, 14th April 2021, 5:49 pm
Updated Wednesday, 14th April 2021, 5:50 pm

Police were called to Stanks Parade just after 9.30pm last night (Tuesday).

They found an 18-year-old man whose hand had been completely severed.

He remains in hospital but his condition is not life-threatening.

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Police guard a cordon in Stanks Parade, Swarcliffe (photo: Gary Longbottom).

Police said the attack may be linked to other recent incidents involving rival groups in the area.

Officers have now been given additional powers to stop and search people and vehicles in Swarcliffe, under Section 60 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994.

It means anyone in that area may be searched for weapons without police officers having to have reasonable grounds to suspect each person searched.

The order covers an area in east Leeds bordering the A64 York Road.

The authorisation was made at about 3pm today for 24 hours but will be reviewed on Thursday morning.

Superintendent Russ Hughes, of Leeds District, said: “The incident last night has resulted in a particularly nasty injury being caused to a young man with a machete, and I know people in the community will be as shocked and appalled as we are at this level of violence.

“While detectives from Leeds District CID are still working to establish the full circumstances, we believe this attack may be linked to other previous incidents involving rival groups.

“Violence such as this cannot and will not be tolerated and we will continue doing everything we can to identify those responsible and to take positive action against them.

“We are putting a range of measures in place to deter any further incidents including the use of additional search powers under Section 60. This gives officers an increased ability to target those involved in carrying weapons so we can prevent any further offences.

“Officers from the local neighbourhood policing team will also be increasing their patrols and presence in the area.

“I want to reassure people that we remain very firmly committed to working proactively to keep our communities safe, and I hope they will be supportive of the approach we are taking.”

The full West Yorkshire Police statement:

Police have temporarily put additional stop and search powers in place in part of Leeds after a man suffered a severed hand in an attack which may be linked to other recent incidents.

Senior officers at Leeds District have authorised the use of Section 60 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994, which gives officers the right to search people or vehicles for offensive weapons or dangerous instruments in a defined area for a set period to prevent serious violence.

It means anyone in that area may be searched for weapons without police officers having to have reasonable grounds to suspect each person searched.

The order covers an area in east Leeds bordering the A64 York Road.

The authorisation was made at 3.06pm today for 24 hours but will be reviewed in the morning.

It follows an incident at about 9.30pm last night (13/4) where an 18-year-old man was assaulted with a machete and his hand completely severed. He is continuing to receive treatment in hospital.

While enquiries are at an early stage, there is information to suggest it may be linked to previous incidents, including assaults and criminal damage, involving rival groups in the area.

Investigations into those previous incidents have seen a number of people arrested and charged with offences.

Anyone who witnessed last night’s incident or who has any information that could assist the investigation is asked to contact Leeds District CID via 101 quoting crime reference 13210182460.