Southend knife offender jailed

A Southend officer who returned to her patrols shortly after taking part in a community event focused on knife crime caught an offender who had been carrying a seven-inch blade.

Acting Sergeant Carly Boitoult, of Southend’s town centre team, had engaged with children at an event near the Knife Angel – a sculpture raising awareness of the impact of knife crime – on Thursday July 4.

At around 5.40pm, she resumed her patrol of Southend High Street, when she was approached by a member of the public who advised her of suspected drug dealing activity nearby.

Sgt Boitoult approached a group and one ran away. This man, Rashid Yousefi, 28, of Windermere Road, Southend, was detained and searched under Section 23 of the Misuse of Drugs Act.

Due to suspicions he may have concealed or discarded evidence nearby, officers swiftly searched the area and conducted CCTV enquiries which revealed that Yousefi had thrown a knife onto a nearby roof.

This weapon was recovered and revealed to be a large kitchen knife.

Yousefi was arrested and later charged with possession of a knife in a public place.

At Southend Magistrates’ Court on Friday July 5, he admitted the charge and was jailed for 26 weeks.