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Old 08-13-2019, 12:25 PM
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Default New York Cops confiscated over 1,600 knives from schools, a five-year high

https://nypost.com/2019/08/12/cops-c...ive-year-high/

Cops confiscated over 1,600 knives from schools, a five-year high
By Selim Algar
August 12, 2019 | 7:37pm | Updated

The number of weapons confiscated in city schools last year hovered near a five-year high — with knife seizures up a startling 92% since 2015, according to a Post analysis of new NYPD data.

A total of 1,677 knives — nearly one for every city school — were found on students during the past academic year, the numbers show.

That’s the highest figure in at least five years — and up drastically from the 873 blades seized in city schools in the 2014-2015 year.

“Nothing has changed,” said Greg Floyd, president of the school safety agents’ union. “The numbers keep rising year by year. This just means that more children are bringing knives to school because they know other kids are bringing knives to school.

The troubling statistics hit home for the Big Apple especially in 2017, when a Bronx teen fatally stabbed one classmate and injured another — the city’s first classroom slaying in 25 years.

Killer student Abel Cedeno claimed that he just snapped after months of bullying for being gay. He was found guilty of manslaughter, weapons possession and assault last month and faces up to 50 years in prison.

Floyd argued Monday that rampant bullying is contributing to student armament — and that increasingly lax punishment policies are exacerbating the problem.

“We remain hopeful that the new chancellor will recognize that bullying is an integral part of school safety,” Floyd said of Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza. “Because if this isn’t truly addressed, kids are going to take matters into their own hands.”

Overall, weapon recovery in schools dipped slightly last year, dropping to 2,701 from 2,718 during the 2017-2018 school year.

But despite the slight ebb last year, weapons seizures in city schools were up by 60% since 2015, when 1,673 weapons were recovered.

A DOE spokesman said Monday that the rise in knife possession can be attributed to an increase in unannounced metal detector scanning that began two years ago.

In addition to those pop-up scanners, the DOE has metal detectors permanently installed at roughly 90 school buildings.

Of the 2,701 weapons seized last year, 1,171 — or 43% — were caught through scanners, according to the NYPD.

Citing scanners effectiveness as both deterrents and barriers, Floyd called for more across the DOE.

But critics of the tactic argue that it creates a repressive atmosphere and should be kept to a minimum.

The DOE spokesman also contended Monday that improved school climate is making students and staffers more comfortable in reporting the presence of weapons.

“Our schools are safe and getting safer — overall weapons recovery, major crime and suspensions are down, and we’re proud of the progress we’re making,” said DOE spokesman Will Mantell.

Meanwhile, school gun busts ticked up from five to six this past year, although that’s down from 10 two years ago, according to the NYPD.

BB gun confiscations rose from 37 to 44 last year, the numbers show.

Boxcutter and razor recoveries dipped from 771 to 625 last year, while tasers and stun gun busts rose from 47 to 55.

Weapons confiscations in the unspecified “other” category — including mace, pepper spray and other “dangerous instruments” — dropped from 307 to 294, according to the data.
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