Domestic abuse victims will be given blunt knives by cops in a bizarre bid to stop attacks in the home.
The shock move is being piloted by police in Nottinghamshire, England with 100 “no point” blades handed to people who have been threatened or attacked with a knife.
They will replace sharper blades in the home and officers hope the scheme will save lives, with 17 percent of all knife crime in the area involving domestic violence.
But charities have slammed the barmy move — and fear it will instead stop cops from arresting abusers.
“We accept that this is a pilot, but this alone will not keep survivors safe. The fact that police propose to change the knives in high-risk cases is really worrying,” a spokesman for Refuge, the domestic violence charity, said.
“The police should be using their powers to arrest the perpetrator, secure protective orders for the survivor and refer to specialist agencies for support.”
‘They will do something else’
While Charlotte Kneer, the chief executive of Reigate and Banstead Women’s Aid Refuge, said: “It is well-intentioned but the wrong approach.
“If someone is grabbing knives out of kitchen drawers then they are a homicide threat. If there is not a knife handy in the drawer, they will do something else. They could grab a rolling pin.”
The number of victims attacked in the home has surged in recent years. In the UK, around 1.3 million women a year report experiences of domestic abuse.
In the US, nearly 20 people per minute, on average, are physically abused by an intimate partner, according to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV). One in three women in the US have experienced some form of physical violence by an intimate partner.
Praise by victim
Addressing the backlash, Superintendent Matt McFarlane said it is a measure the authorities needed to take.
“This is a measure we need to take. We want to reduce that risk. It is a trial. We have about a 100 of them — and we have so far given out about 50. The knife is blunt at the end — but still functions as a knife — so you can’t stab someone,” McFarlane said.
“People will stay in a relationship after some serious episodes of domestic abuse. They may stay together for children, get back together, or might get back together when they are out of prison.”
It has also been praised as “100 percent positive” by Fiona McCulloch, 38, whose partner was jailed this year for attacking her.
“In a domestic setting if they are determined to hurt you then they will. To have a blunt knife in my situation, it would have taken that risk away. It is like you are taking away their options and the more you can take away the better,” she said.
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