Police and crime commissioner 'shocked' by Southsea Common stabbing

THE POLICE and crime commissioner for Hampshire said she is ‘shocked’ by the recent stabbing of a teenage boy in Portsmouth, and has vowed to tackle knife crime going forward.

Tuesday, 20th July 2021, 6:45 pm

Newly-elected police boss Donna Jones said she is designing a programme to help reduce similar crimes following the incident on Monday night (July 19).

As reported, a 17-year-old boy and an 18-year-old man from Southsea were both arrested on suspicion of attempted murder after a 15-year-old boy was stabbed in the chest near Portsmouth Naval Memorial.

The victim was taken to Southampton General Hospital in a serious condition.

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Police at Southsea Common on July 20 after a 15-year-old boy was stabbed near Portsmouth Naval Memorial on July 19. Picture: Stuart Vaizey

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Ms Jones said: ‘I am shocked to hear of the stabbing of a 15-year-old boy on Southsea Common last night. My thoughts are with the victim and his family and I wish him a speedy recovery.

‘The increase of young people carrying knives is incredibly worrying. Tackling the issues lies with everyone: parents, schools, the police, and young people themselves. Knives kill, and educating young people about the risks and harm and the likely prison sentence if caught carrying a knife, is the key to tackling this growing crime.

‘To reduce harm and serious injuries, as police and crime commissioner, I am designing a programme to address adverse childhood experiences – ACEs. The best way to reduce crimes such as this, is to prevent young people from becoming criminals in the first place by addressing the ACEs; and working with mothers from pregnancy to reduce this harm to young children is vital.’

Police at Southsea Common on July 20 after a 15-year-old boy was stabbed near Portsmouth Naval Memorial on July 19. Picture: Stuart Vaizey

Videos were posted on social media of paramedics treating a person near the memorial on Monday evening at around 9.30pm.

More than five police vehicles were in the area before it was cordoned off.

District commander for Portsmouth Supt, Clare Jenkins, added: ‘We are continuing to work closely with partner agencies in Portsmouth to focus on prevention and engagement work to tackle knife crime.

Police at Southsea Common on July 20 after a 15-year-old boy was stabbed near Portsmouth Naval Memorial on July 19. Picture: Stuart Vaizey

‘Our officers also work closely with retailers and trading standards, to ensure weapons are kept off our streets. In addition knife crime is an issue that is addressed by the city’s high harm team.

‘I’m pleased to say that changes in legislation introduced earlier this month under the Offensive Weapons Act 2019 mean that it is now an offence to possess items such as zombie knives even in private premises. This change will assist my officers to make the streets of Portsmouth safer.’

Last summer the hot weather saw a rise in crime on Southsea Common, including an incident where a 20-year-old woman was beaten as well as a dispersal order being issued on the seafront after reports of teens fighting, taking drugs and intimidating residents.

Residents who have any information about the incident are urged to let police know either by calling 101, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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