Knife seizure imagery project report

Nicola Cogan, Chin-Van Y. Chau, Simon C. Hunter, Kirsten Russell, Will Linden, Damien Williams, Nicola Swinson, Petya Eckler, Lee Knifton, Vicki Jordan

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The urgency to reduce knife crime and knife carrying has remained a primary
issue for policy makers and police authorities across Scotland. Young people, particularly those living in the most deprived areas, have been identified as those most at risk of being exposed to higher levels of knife crime and assault related sharp-force injuries. Sharing images of recovered/seized knives in police campaigns and across media outlets (e.g., newspapers, online articles and social media) has been one strategy used to help deter knife carrying. The intention behind the use of knife seizure images is to warn the public of the dangers of knives and to show the success of police efforts in seizing weapons off the streets. However, little empirical research has been conducted to explore whether the use of knife seizure images is an effective deterrent. The aim of this study was to explore the views of young people living in areas of high and low rates of knife crime areas across Glasgow, to gain their perspectives concerning the use of knife seizure images as a crime-deterrent. Between January 2021 and April 2021, a group of 20 young people were invited to take part in online interviews. They were spilt into two equal groups, those living in higher or in lower areas of knife crime around Glasgow (determined by the Scottish Indicator of Multiple Deprivation). A collection of knife images obtained from published articles by the UK news
media and from stock images produced by No Knifes Better Lives were shown
to the participants.
Original languageEnglish
TypeProject Report
Media of outputPdf File
PublisherUniversity of Strathclyde
Number of pages21
Place of PublicationGlasgow
Publication statusPublished - 31 Oct 2021


  • knife seizure
  • imagery
  • knife crime
  • young people
  • Scotland
  • deprivation
  • deprived areas
  • assault
  • sharp-force injuries
  • deterrent


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