Increased stop and search powers have been put in place temporarily in the Harehills and Chapeltown areas of Leeds following a serious assault on a teenage boy this evening.
A 15-year-old boy is being treated at hospital for a serious head injury after reportedly being attacked with a machete-type weapon.
Senior police officers have authorised the use of Section 60 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 to detect and deter the carrying of offensive weapons in parts of the city, following recent incidents and intelligence suggesting an increased potential for violent crime and carrying of weapons in the area.
The order has been brought in following a serious assault which occurred at around 6pm this evening (Sunday, 16 April) in the Harehills Park area.
The temporary powers have been put in place in an area bordered by A64 York Road, A64(M), Regent Street, A61, Scott Hall Road, Potternewton Lane, Harehills Lane, Easterly Road, Oakwood Lane and Wykebeck Valley Road.
The order came into effect at 8pm for an initial period of 12 hours. Its continuation will be subject to regular reviews.
It gives police officers the power to search people or vehicles for offensive weapons or dangerous instruments without them having to have their usual grounds to suspect each person searched.
Maintaining the trust and confidence of the community is vital and we are continuing to liaise with key community representatives, including the district’s Independent Advisory Group, to ensure appropriate scrutiny and accountability around the use of this additional power.
Superintendent Lee Berry, of Leeds District, said: “We understand that this incident will cause some concern within the local community.
“Serious violence cannot and will not be tolerated and we will continue to do everything we can to take positive action against those who engage in such behaviour. The use of the additional search powers under Section 60 gives officers an increased ability to target those involved in carrying weapons so we can prevent any further offences.
“Extensive enquiries are already ongoing into the circumstances of this incident, and I would urge anyone who has information that could help this investigation to please report it, either to the police directly or anonymously to Crimestoppers.
“Officers from the local neighbourhood policing team will be increasing their patrols and presence in the areas affected to deter any further incidents and reassure those communities.
“Anyone who witnessed any part of the incident that occurred in the Harehills Park area who has any information that could help the police enquiries into this offence are asked to contact Leeds District CID either by using 101 Live Chat online or by calling 101, quoting crime reference 13230210192.
“Information can also be given anonymously to independent charity Crimestoppers by calling 0800 555 111.”