South Holland police inspector issues warnings on knife possession and booze
A Spalding police inspector has issued a tough warning on teenagers carrying knives and drinking booze following a stabbing at a party in the town on Saturday night.
Insp Gareth Boxall isn't commenting on the specific circumstances of the party, where it is understood teenage gate-crashers brandished knives and took 'nox' - nitrous oxide, also known as laughing gas.
But he is speaking out about the things that can go wrong at teenage gatherings and advising parents how to keep their children out of harm's way.
Mum Lesa Jeffery started a new Facebook group after her teenage daughter's birthday was wrecked, and is advising anyone organising a party for their youngsters to "have plenty of adults and someone checking who is invited and who isn't".
Insp Boxall says no one can legally carry a knife, not even for protection, and anyone carrying a knife could get into an argument and end up killing someone ... or having the knife used on them.
The inspector said: "We cannot give further comment regarding the circumstances of the incident as it is subject of an ongoing criminal investigation.
"However, with regard to teenagers attending parties and other gatherings I agree with some of the advice posted:
"* Parents should know where their children are
"* Parents should speak to one another to know what the plans are and who is (and isn't invited)
"* Parties should be well supervised by adults, preferably parents
"What I will add is that alcohol should not be available to under 18s. The presence of alcohol in any amount to under 18s - aside from whether the law is broken in supplying it - will increase the risks of things going wrong.
"Consumption of alcohol by under 18s risks their health but even in small amounts impairs judgement.
"That impaired judgement can result in teenagers being more likely to - to name just a few - get involved in confrontation and violence; engage in ill-informed sexual encounters; and be more likely to take drugs.
"I don't seek to connect any of that advice to what happened this weekend but on the subject of house parties particularly, I strongly urge parents to follow this advice.
"On the subject of the carrying of knives the law is very clear, you cannot carry one ... not even for protection.
"People who carry knives are dealt with as robustly as possible by the criminal justice system. But aside from the possible punishment, those thinking about carrying a knife should really think about why they are carrying it.
"Even with the excuse of needing to defend themselves and with no planned intention of using it…. what happens if you get into an altercation, that altercation could very easily escalate to you using that knife and killing someone or that knife being used on you.
"Taking someone's life and ruining your own life as well as everyone else's involved, is that really worth it?"