Knife possession should have stiffer sentences

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To Prime Minister Theresa May and Home Secretary Amber Rudd:

Since January 1 this year, there have been more than 20 incidents of knife crime in the West Midlands.
And in the same period five murders have involved the use of knives.
They include Mylee Billingham, aged just 8, who was stabbed to death at her home in Brownhills in January, and Jasmine Forrester, 11, who lost her life after being stabbed at a house in Wolverhampton.
Something must be done to stop the wave of violence that continues to blight the region.
It is a tragedy that so many young people are losing their lives to violence, but the wider public perception is that nothing is being done to stop it.
The crime rate in the West Midlands has increased by 14 per cent over the past year, with particularly steep rises for violent crimes involving weapons.
How many more people have to die before the powers that be realise that our criminal justice system is failing the people it is supposed to protect?
One of the key problems is that sentencing guidelines are too weak.
Those who are found to be carrying a knife or any other weapon should not be allowed to walk free from court.
This newspaper and its readers demands a change in the law.
We are calling for the introduction of a compulsory custodial sentence for the possession of an offensive weapon.
Unless Britain's courts are given stricter powers to deal with violent offenders, the murder rate will continue to rise.
Please sign this petition and make a stand against violent crime.



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