Police see rise in use of weapons
Police have seen more people with weapons after being called to attend incidents over the past few weeks.
A spokesman called for parents to be “aware of what their children are up to and where and with whom they hang out”.
He said any suspect caught with a knife or “any other bladed or pointed article” would be arrested and held until the next available court session.
Conviction in Magistrates’ Court may come with a mandatory three-year sentence as well as a $5,000 fine.
If convicted at the Supreme Court, the offender stands to face a mandatory five-year sentence as well as up to $10,000 in fines.
Bladed weapons include any type of knife or homemade item with a blade or a sharp point, including screwdrivers and chisels, as well as anything that has been sharpened.
The spokesman said that under the law, even a sharpened toothbrush would count, but that police usually encountered machetes and kitchen knives.
Offensive weapons seen by police are defined as items made and adapted to cause injury.
The spokesman said even a piece of rope with a blunt object attached would be sufficient to cause injury.
He added: “A conviction in Magistrates’ Court can land an offender with a two-year sentence as well as a $1,500 fine.
“A Supreme Court conviction will lead to a five-year sentence as well as a $5,000 fine.”
He called for anyone working with knives or gardening tools to leave them at work or take them home immediately after completing work.
He said police had heard “all the excuses” such as claiming at 3am that a machete was being used for trimming trees.
The spokesman told parents: “If you can, be aware of what items your kids are leaving the house with and take note of anything that could be deemed a weapon as previously described.”
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