Street safety bolstered following teen stabbings

Police in Magpie Road following reports of a stabbing

Police in Magpie Road following reports of a stabbing - Credit: Francis Redwood

A community group is working closely with the police to reassure the public after stabbings and reports of county line drug feuds in Norwich.

Bowthorpe Neighbourhood Watch Team has seen a rise in anti-social behaviour in recent weeks at a time when the city has seen stabbings in Vale Green and Motum Road. 

Communities across Norwich have been shocked by news of the murder of 18-year-old Joe Dix in Vale Green on Friday, January 28.

A teenager was also taken to the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital for treatment on Thursday after an incident in Motum Road.

Jon Watson, lead coordinator of the Bowthorpe Neighbourhood Watch Team, said: "With the recent events that have been happening, understandably people are concerned about what this means for safety on the streets.

"The fantastic Street Safe initiative from the police has provided an easy way for people to report exact areas where they feel unsafe, meaning that the police can target their patrols." 

Jon Watson, lead co-ordinator of the Bowthorpe Neighbourhood Watch Team.

Jon Watson, lead coordinator of the Bowthorpe Neighbourhood Watch Team - Credit: Jon Watson

Mr Watson said the police's county lines operations have been "instrumental" in taking the issue off many streets.

"We also need to look deeper into what’s causing these young people to end up on the wrong path," he added.

The Bowthorpe group speak to the community on a daily basis to inform the police, councils and other partner agencies about any issues.

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Anti-social behaviour has been a problem which keeps cropping up.

Mr Watson said: "The issues being experienced in our community lately has been young people.

"It’s an unfortunate fact that these young people don’t have the same kind of schemes that used to exist many years ago – and the pandemic only made things worse for those essential services."

Following the recent stabbing close to Bowthorpe in Motum Road, Norwich North MP Chloe Smith met with police on Friday.

She said: “I’ve spoken to the police commander and would reassure residents that the police are working around the clock on the incidents we’ve seen this [last] week, with eight arrests having been made.

Norwich North MP Chloe Smith. Picture: Neil Didsbury

Norwich North MP Chloe Smith. Picture: Neil Didsbury - Credit: Neil Didsbury.

"Norwich is a safe city, with knife crime or murder being actually very rare.

"There’ll be a heightened police presence in the days ahead, and if anyone has information on the events it is really important to help keep our neighbourhoods safe by letting the police know."