Wandsworth’s top police officer has outlined plans to tackle crime after figures for robbery, theft and violent offences have soared in the past year.

Borough Commander Peter Laverick attended the Safer Neighbourhood Board meeting on Tuesday (December 5), with a particular focus on knife crime.

Three men were fatally stabbed within the space of a month this year, with Malachi Brooks, 21, Mahamad Hassan, 17, and a 24-year-old man all being killed.

A man was stabbed in the buttocks in an unprovoked attack on April 8, while a 21-year-old man was stabbed with a screwdriver in the head in Tooting on April 25.

Temporary Detective Chief Superintendent Laverick said: “We do work closely with the [council’s] gangs multi-agency panel, I can’t really overestimate or state how much value that work does. We help to identify those who are most at risk.

“Within all that as well we’ve got an initiative. We’ve got a detective inspector who runs the community safety unit here in the audience here, and through her we introduced Project Tea Rose.

“So whenever police on this borough go to an incident of domestic abuse or there’s a child who has witnessed it, their school is told immediately the next day so they are ready to support them.

“That has been so successful, and so well received by schools in Wandsworth that it’s now being rolled out across the Metropolitan Police Service.

“In drugs operations over the last nine months, we’ve convicted over 80 people of covert and covert drugs operations [and] sentenced to approaching, accumulatively, 200 years in prison. Information coming from that has identified a crystal meth lab in another part of London and millions of pounds have been seized.

“We’ve identified and worked on ‘county lines’ issues and we’ve got officers set aside to deal with child sexual exploitation, so they work with young girls. There’s a whole range of things.”

Recent data shows that knife crime has increased to nearly 44 per cent in the past 12 months, rising from 252 to 362, while thefts of cycles (31), and both residential (20) and personal robberies (19) have also increased.

Mr Laverick added: “What we do is we keep on going, we keep on trying to build partnerships and work in conjunction with the likes of Rebecca and George who do a youth service, and do a fantastic job, and I think that going forward the knife crime forum which started has been so positive.

“I’ll be very, very happy for police to take a backseat and support, and for the community to work, because cultures are built within communities.

“If that became strong, then I’d think we could start producing this again and making it sustainable.”