Knife Crime is any crime that involves a sharp or bladed instrument.

We are working hard with our partners to raise awareness on the consequences of knife crime, through various education programmes and by using powers available to take action against offenders.

The Law

It is illegal to;

  • Buy a knife when under the age of 18,
  • Carry a knife without good reason, unless it has a folding blade with a cutting edge of less than 3 inches long or less,
  • Carry, buy or sell any type of banned knife,
  • Use any type of knife in a threatening way (even a legal knife).

Carrying a knife for self-protection is not a defence. If you feel under threat to the extent you believe it necessary to carry a knife, there are lots of organisations you can contact for help and support. Please see the useful links section. It is never too late to get help.


  • The maximum sentence for an adult carrying a knife is a 4 year prison sentence and a criminal record,
  • If you stab somebody and they die you could get a minimum of 25 years in prison and a criminal record,
  • A criminal record will effect your whole life applying for college, jobs or visas into countries like USA, Canada or Australia,
  • You could become a victim, the knife may be turned on you,
  • You could end up injured, in hospital or even worse, dead,
  • You will place an emotional strain on relationships with your family and friends,
  • You could be evicted from your property

When you can use a knife legitimately

  • If it is used for or being transported to work,
  • If it is being exhibited in a museum or gallery,
  • If it is being used in a reactment, film, TV, theatre, or for religious purposes,
  • If it is to be used for a demonstration.

Ultimately it will be a court that will decide if you have good reason to be carrying a knife as a weapon, if you are charged.

Anybody with information about knife crime or if you know somebody who is carrying a knife please report it to Merseyside Police on 101 or 999 in an emergency. Alternatively report anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.