Sir Ian Blair calls for end to knife crime

Mayor of London Boris Johnson was today joined by Metropolitan police commissioner Sir Ian Blair in calling for an end of the violent killing of teenagers in the city.

Seventeen teenagers have so far been killed in the capital this year.

And speaking at Mr Johnson’s monthly press conference, Sir Ian said: “We have to stop this killing”.

He claimed the only way to reduce the killing was with the support of the local community and young people, something he thought the Met had.

Yesterday hundreds of people demonstrated in north London after the fatal stabbing of Ben Kinsella, something Sir Ian claimed he admired.

The Met chief warned today, however, that there was no “simple fix” to London’s current knife crime.

He said there were factors beyond policing and the city as a whole needed to “reach out to children” and “find alternatives to gangs”.

Sir Ian outlined some of the success of the Met’s Operation Blunt 2, which has searched some 20,000 people and arrested over 1,200.

In May this year, two-and-a-half more people were arrested and prosecuted for carrying knives, compared to September.

Last week alone, 105 people were arrested and charged.

The Met commissioner added though that he was frustrated by the current relationship between the police and the courts.