Two teenagers have been stabbed at a shopping centre in Croydon as violent attacks continue to sweep the capital.
A 16-year-old boy and another victim, described by police as being in his “late teens or early 20s”, were found at the Whitgift Shopping Centre on Friday afternoon suffering from stab injuries.
Officers were called at 5.17pm to reports of a stabbing, with paramedics and the London Air Ambulance also attending the scene.
The condition of the victims is currently unknown.
Police detectives from Croydon CID are investigating and so far no arrests have been made.
These latest attacks come hours after Met Police Commissioner Cressida Dick insisted the force had “not lost control” of the streets as it was announced that there will be 300 extra police officers patrolling hotspots around London this weekend.
However, on Saturday one of Britain’s most senior police chiefs argued that stop-and-search powers are not being exercised enough in the fight against violent crime.
“This power may have been used too freely in the past, but the pendulum has now swung too far in the opposite direction,” National Police Chiefs’ Council chairman Sara Thornton told the Telegraph.
“Our officers must know that we back them to use their powers – lawfully and respectfully, but with confidence.”
Her calls were echoed by London Mayor Sadiq Khan, who told BBC Radio 4′s Today programme: “What you will see over the course of the next few weeks and months is what we have seen over the last few weeks and months which is stop-and-search based on suspicion of carrying an offensive weapon going up, more arrests as a consequence of this intelligence-led stop-and-search going up and hopefully our city becoming safer.”
He went on to urge family members and friends of people carrying knives to help tackle the problem.
“You could be a mum or dad, big brother, big sister, a friend, a girlfriend, a boyfriend who knows somebody carrying a knife, leaving their home with a knife, involved in criminality – there’s no honour in keeping that a secret,” he said.
“You should try and prevent that person carrying a knife, leaving home with a knife.”
Before Friday’s incidents, Scotland Yard confirmed it was investigating 55 suspected murders in London since the start of 2018.
Stabbings are at their highest rate in the city since 2010/11.
Police have made arrests in four out of five murder investigations launched this week including that of a 30-year-old man today for the drive-by shooting of Tanesha Melbourne-Blake. The 17-year-old was killed in Tottenham on Monday as she sat chatting to friends.
Minutes later 16-year-old Amaan Shakoor was shot dead in Walthamstow and two days later Ogunsola was murdered near Hackney Central Station.
Police also arrested five people for the attacks overnight Thursday.
On Thursday night there were protests in Hackney, east London - near the spot where 18-year-old Israel Ogunsola was stabbed to death Wednesday.
On Friday Dick promised more weapons searches as she faces increasing pressure to combat so-called “postcode wars” between rival gangs that have led to a spate stabbings and shootings.