'We've taken nearly 300 knives off Corby's streets, but today I feel like I've sort of failed'

Knife amnesty volunteers say that they have collected hundreds of knives from concerned people in Corby

Thursday, 27th May 2021, 8:59 am
Jay and Jack run the knife amnesty in Corby. Inset: Rayon Pennycook, who was tragically killed on Tuesday.

The men behind a scheme to get knives off Corby's streets have expressed their sorrow after a boy was stabbed to death in Corby on Tuesday night.

Jay and Jack have been collecting unwanted knives from people in the town for three years. They say that they have taken knives in from children as young as nine since they first started their East Midlands Knife Amnesty scheme in Corby.

Rayon Pennycook was stabbed to death during a fight between a group of teens outside a house in Reynolds Road, Corby, at about 7pm on Tuesday. It's the first time in 25 years a child has been murdered in Corby, although knife crime has doubled in Northamptonshire in the past ten years.

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But Jay and Jack, who run the knife amnesty, say they wish they could have done more.

Jack became involved with the project over fears for the future of his two young children.

"We have people contacting us on social media and we do sweeps in areas we know there could be knives," said Jack. "We've found so many.

"There's nowhere else for people to get rid of them. The police are busy and it's not their fault we don't have a police station anymore where people could take them.

"I feel like today, I've sort of failed in my job."

Jay said he's worked as a doorman in Corby for nine years and has been alarmed by the number of knives that people try to bring in to the town's licensed premises. Today he accompanied one of Rayon's young pals to the scene of the crime so she could pay our respects.

"A couple of years ago I had someone try to bring three knives into The Village," he said.

"He got one taken off my by my colleague and he was swinging the other one round and just missed me.

"All he got was a suspended sentence.

"The problem doesn't lie with the police, it lies with the CPS and the court system."

The pair are also starting a street watch scheme on the Lodge Park estate with the support of the Police and Crime Commissioner. It'll be the second such scheme in Northamptonshire.

They hope it will be a neighbourhood watch for the 21st century, with knife amnesties and safety patrols.

"I feel like we can help people there because they trust us because we're part of their community and have that relationship with them." said Jack.

"We've taken between two and three hundred knives in during the past three years and disposed of them. I think the youngest was from someone who was nine.

"It's terrifying."

You can find out more about the East Midlands Knife Amnesty and find further ways to contact them on their Facebook page.