Leeds machete attacks: Serious injuries and arrests after series of violent incidents in past two months

A series of machete attacks have been reported across Leeds in the past two months, resulting in a number of young people being hospitalised and one having his hand completely severed.

Thursday, 27th May 2021, 5:24 pm

Many have taken place during daylight hours on residential streets, while one armed brawl took place in a public park.

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Armed officers deployed to Harehills as 14-year-old boy attacked by gang of mach...

It comes as the Yorkshire Evening Post continues its Saving Lives After Lockdown campaign, which is shining a light on the impact of knife crime across the city and looking at ways to prevent an upsurge in incidents as restrictions are eased.

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Police guard the scene in Stanks Parade, Swarcliffe, after a man's hand was completely severed. Picture: Gary Longbottom

The latest incident happened in Harehills on Wednesday evening when a 14-year-old boy was left seriously injured after being attacked by a gang of men in Hudson Road.

Detective Inspector Guy Shackleton, of Leeds District CID, said investigators were working to establish the circumstances surrounding the incident.

"We would like to hear from anyone who witnessed the incident or any part of the circumstances leading up to it or who saw those involved in the area.

"This occurred in a busy residential area in the early evening and there will have been people about who saw what happened."

Police said that the injured boy had been taken to hospital for treatment and was arrested on suspicion of violent disorder.

Earlier this week, police confirmed four arrests had been made after incidents involving machetes in Harehills and Woodhouse.

At around 3.30pm on Saturday, police received reports of a disturbance involving men armed with machetes in Markham Avenue, Harehills.

The suspects left the scene in the car and officers began to trace the vehicle before receiving reports of a similar incident in Ganton Close in Woodhouse.

Those two incidents were believed to be linked and armed police were deployed.

Meanwhile, terrified business owners in a city centre arcade locked their doors on May 17 when a weapon was seen as three or four people began to fight in Briggate at around 5.25pm.

One Cafe owner said he ran inside his shop and locked the door after spotting a man "waving around what looked like a huge machete".

At the start of the month, a 15-year-old boy was left with a wound to his leg and a fractured skull after he was struck on the head with a machete during a fight.

The violence took place in the ginnel that runs between York Road and Rookwood Avenue, Osmondthorpe, at around 6.30pm on May 4.

The boy was arrested along with a 17-year-old boy who was also injured. They were released but remained under investigation.

Police also arrested a 16-year-old boy who is now going through the courts. He was charged with two counts of Section 18 wounding with intent, two counts of threatening a person with a bladed article in a public place, and possession of cannabis with intent to supply.

The violence in Osmondthorpe came just a few weeks after an attack in Swarcliffe that resulted in a 18-year-old man's hand being completely severed.

Two men in their early twenties have been charged in relation to the incident and are going through the courts.

Amid significant concerns over the potential for further violence in the wake of that attack in Stanks Parade, police were granted temporary additional stop and search powers.

The move was welcomed by local residents who told the Yorkshire Evening Post that the events of April 13 were not a reflection of what the area was really like and they welcomed the deterrent of extra patrols.

Two teenagers were also arrested in connection with a fight involving machetes on Woodhouse Moor in Hyde Park.

Armed police and a helicopter had been deployed after reports of men being seen with machetes at around 8.15pm on March 30.

Two 17-year-olds later turned up at hospital with serious injuries and were arrested on suspicion of affray.

Police said at the time that around 200 people had been dispersed from the park, with the violence seen that evening believed to have been targeted and involving groups known to each other.

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