‘Education is key to preventing knife crime’ says charity director in the wake of Stevenage stabbing

Mendip Way in Stevenage remains closed after a teenager was stabbed last night. Picture: Rebecca Day

Mendip Way in Stevenage remains closed after a teenager was stabbed last night. Picture: Rebecca Day - Credit: Archant

The director of an anti-knife crime charity said the news a teenager was stabbed on Tuesday night in Stevenage was ‘horrific and extremely worrying’.

The 17-year-old victim was taken to hospital with stab injuries after the incident in Mendip Way, Great Ashby.

Jan Maddern is director of Billy’s Wish, a charity which has been given funding to roll out education programmes on knife crime across Stevenage secondary schools in the new year.

She said: “This is terrible. Any stabbing is horrific and it’s extremely worrying that young people are out on the streets with knives.

“The aim of Billy’s Wish is to try to educate young people on the dangers of carrying a knife.

“When people carry knives, they think there are protecting themselves. They are not necessarily bad people – but a lot of people have their own knives turned on them.

“You are more likely to get stabbed if you carry a knife. We are trying to make people aware of that. More and more you hear about knife crimes in places you wouldn’t expect to hear about it.

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“Knife crime is low in Hertfordshire, but any victim is one too many.

“We are trying to educate people on the consequences – if someone is caught with a knife it could lead to conviction, which means they wouldn’t be able to visit America – all these things that young people wouldn’t think about.”

The incident is the second stabbing within a year in Great Ashby. In May, a man in his 20s was stabbed in Cherwell Drive.

Police are looking for two other people in connection with the incident on Tuesday, a man and a woman who had a dog with them. They were reported to have left the scene along Whitehorse Lane before making for the area of Quantock Close and Lomond Way. They may then have left the area, probably in a vehicle, and police are concerned they may be injured. The man and woman have been described as white and of medium build.

Anyone with information should contact police via the non-emergency number 101 or dial 999 in an emergency.