Calls for more searches after two stabbings in broad daylight shock Redbridge

Police cordoning off part of High Street, Barkingside, after a stabbing this morning. Photo credit:

Police cordoning off part of High Street, Barkingside, after a stabbing this morning. Photo credit: Julia Osborne - Credit: Julia Osborne (taken from Twitter)

Two stabbings in broad daylight, within 72 hours of each other, have shocked the borough.

A 17-year-old King Solomon High School pupil was attacked metres from Barkingside police station while walking to school at 8.20am on September 7, and is still in hospital a week on.

Two days later, on Friday, an 18-year-old man was stabbed in The Drive, Ilford, just after 1pm.

There is no suggestion the two incidents are linked and so far no arrests have been made.

But the two stabbings have provoked debate among residents, with parents calling for searches to be carried out on school premises.

The mother of a 16-year-old girl at King Solomon told the Recorder: “Unfortunately it is too easy to get knives these days and they are getting into the hands of irresponsible young people.

“I believe the school does need random searches at the very least at the gate, to act as a deterrent.”

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Redbridge GLA member Keith Prince, who is also a ward councillor for Barkingside, was unsure how effective this would be.

“When I worked with the police [for Boris Johnson] we found youths would throw a lot of knives in parks before school, and pick them up after,” he said.

“Personally, I would like to see an increase in random stop and searches across London.”

Cllr Khayer Chowdhury, who has organised a meeting about crime in Ilford town centre, said he thought the stabbings were one-offs.

“We are the only east London borough to have a drop in crime.

“Last week the council and the police arrested 19 people for drug dealing by Ilford station, sending a strong message that if you commit crime in Redbridge you will be dealt with severely,” he added.

King Solomon’s headteacher Matthew Slater said the school would not start routine searches “unless there was probable cause”.

He said: “It is important to remember this took place well outside of school grounds and before school hours. It would be entirely wrong for anyone to make presumptions about their peers’ behaviour based on this.”

Redbridge police have been contacted for comment.