Massive haul of weaponry
A WEAPONS amnesty in the Beccles area revealed an incredible arsenal of weaponry that had been lurking within the community.Over 600 weapons, including Gurkha knives, nunchucks and throwing stars, were disposed of during the amnesty held in Beccles, Bungay and Halesworth in March and April.
A WEAPONS amnesty in the Beccles area revealed an incredible arsenal of weaponry that had been lurking within the community.
Over 600 weapons, including Gurkha knives, nunchucks and throwing stars, were disposed of during the amnesty held in Beccles, Bungay and Halesworth in March and April.
However police have stressed that most of the weapons were probably owned by “decent” people, and that they are delighted that there was such a vast response to the initiative.
Between Monday March 9, when the amnesty started, and last week when it finished, around 615 weapons were placed in the special yellow amnesty bin in Hungate Lane car park, Beccles, the Rainbow car park at Hillside Road, Bungay, and the Rainbow Saxon Way car park at Halesworth.
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Among the items handed in were 541 knives, 22 pistols/ handguns, 21 shotguns and rifles, 19 sea flares, four swords/ bayonets, three nunchucks, three throwing stars, a Bowie knife, Gurkha knives and a quantity of ammunition.
There was also an antique revolver from 1872 and a number of Second World War hand guns.
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However despite the shocking volume and variety of weaponry on show, police have emphasised that the items were probably not owned for violent means.
Sgt Kevin Howell explained: “Because we do it every 18 months to two years people pass away and they leave these items behind. The throwing stars are probably from somebody who took up martial arts and realised it wasn't for them.
“People can't chuck stuff out willy nilly- most decent folks don't chuck stuff out into a hedge. We haven't got bands of people wandering around Beccles or Bungay with weapons. These are just decent folks getting rid of weapons in a proper way.”
He added that he was “delighted” that so many people took advantage of the amnesty.
“Although we are lucky to live in a comparatively low-crime area, we recognise that many rural residents do have unwanted weapons in an attic, shed or cupboard that that they may wish to get rid of and an amnesty gives the opportunity to dispose of them with no questions asked,” he added. “Under normal circumstances the weapons would not pose a threat, however if they fell into the wrong hands - perhaps if you were burgled for example - these could be used for crime, so every item collected means one less in circulation.”
The amnesty was supported by Waveney Community Safety Partnership, who own the bin, and is part of the Nightsafe scheme to address violent crime in the district.
The last amnesty held in the Beccles area took place in the summer of 2007, which yielded 100 knives, a home-made mace crafted from a shopping trolley, and a knuckle duster with a dagger attached to it.