Police have charged five people, including a teenager allegedly in possession of a machete, during a high-visibility operation targeting metro stations and public areas in Sydney’s north and south west over the long weekend.
In response to recent incidents in the area, officers from The Hills Police Area Command, assisted by officers from the Police Transport Command, conducted a proactive high-visibility policing operation targeting metro stations in Sydney’s north west between Thursday (23 January 2020) and Saturday (25 January 2020).
Plain clothed officers also targeted a number of public areas in Mt Druitt, Parramatta, Blacktown, Castle Hill and Liverpool Police Area Commands.
During the operation, police conducted 34 person searches, issued 36 move-on directions and charged five people with offences including knife possession, drug possession and larceny.
Of note, about 9.20pm on Friday (24 January 2020), plain clothed officers stopped a 17-year-old youth near a shopping centre at Parramatta.
The teenager allegedly ran from police, who were able to detain him a short time later.
Officers searched the boy and allegedly located a machete with a 37cm long blade in his backpack.
He was arrested and taken to Parramatta Police Station, where he was charged with custody of knife in public place.
The teenager was granted conditional bail to appear at a children’s court on Tuesday 28 January 2020.
Minister for Police and Emergency Services David Elliott said this kind of behaviour is always unacceptable and won’t be tolerated, no matter what age.
“I applaud the police for their stellar work in catching these offenders who think they can run amuck where ever they like,” Minister Elliott said.
“No matter if you’re 17 or 47 you will face the full force of the law.”
The Hills Police Area Commander, Superintendent Jason Joyce, said young people needed to understand the severe consequences of knife-related crime.
“Every single concealed weapon is extremely dangerous, and has the potential to be used to threaten or cause serious harm to members of the community,” Supt Joyce said.
“Situations can spiral out of control very quickly, and, heartbreakingly, can ruin young lives. I would also call on parents to do their best to ensure their kids are safe.
“Even if violence does not occur, a charge such as knife possession has the potential to severely impact a young person’s future.”
Also of note, officers from The Hills Police Area Command stopped a 26-year old-man as he left the Hills Showground metro station.
After speaking with officers, the man allegedly produced a wallet which is believed to have been stolen.
He was issued a Court Attendance Notice for goods in custody and is due to appear at Parramatta Local Court on Wednesday 4 March 2020.
Superintendent Joyce said there was a correlation between police activity and a downward trend in crime, which meant officers would continue to run high-visibility, proactive operations.
“Our priority is community safety, and keeping public areas free of criminal activity,” Supt Joyce said.
“Proactive policing is vital to achieving this aim and we will continue to have a presence wherever our officers are needed.
“Criminal activity will not be tolerated, and we will use all the tools and capabilities in our power to keep our streets safe.”