Worthing school knife incident: Teenage girl detained by police

A teenage girl has been arrested after an incident involving a knife at a school in Worthing.
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Durrington High School informed parents and carers of ‘an incident’ via a post on Facebook at 10am. Pictures since emerged, showing police officers at the scene.

A letter sent by the school, seen by this newspaper, revealed that the ‘serious incident’ involved a young person being in ‘possession of a knife’.

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Sussex Police has now issued a statement, confirming officers were called to the school shortly after 9.30am.

The school said the lockdown 'resulted in us being able to effectively and calmly manage the situation'. Photo: Eddie MitchelThe school said the lockdown 'resulted in us being able to effectively and calmly manage the situation'. Photo: Eddie Mitchel
The school said the lockdown 'resulted in us being able to effectively and calmly manage the situation'. Photo: Eddie Mitchel

A police spokesperson said: “Police were called to Durrington High School to a report of a teenager believed to be in possession of a knife. Officers attended and, at 9.43am, a teenage girl was safely detained.

“She has been arrested on suspicion of being in possession of a bladed article in a public place and remains in police custody at this time.”

Chief Inspector Sarah Leadbeatter said police will now work with the school to ‘establish the full circumstances of the situation’.

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She added: “I would like to thank Durrington High School staff for promptly reporting their concerns to the police, which allowed us to respond swiftly and take an individual into custody.

Police officers have responded to the incident at Durrington High School. Photo: Eddie MitchellPolice officers have responded to the incident at Durrington High School. Photo: Eddie Mitchell
Police officers have responded to the incident at Durrington High School. Photo: Eddie Mitchell

“I would like to reassure the public that this was a fast-moving, contained situation in which no-one was harmed, and there is no wider safety risk.”

‘Students were kept safe in a locked room’

The school has also issued a further statement to this newspaper.

Co-headteachers Shaun Allison and Chris Woodcock said: “This morning a young person with a small kitchen knife came on to the school site.

No children or staff have been harmed and the incident is finished, the school said. Photo: Eddie MitchellNo children or staff have been harmed and the incident is finished, the school said. Photo: Eddie Mitchell
No children or staff have been harmed and the incident is finished, the school said. Photo: Eddie Mitchell
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"Our staff and students responded brilliantly, as we immediately initiated our lockdown procedures. This ensured all students were kept safe in a locked room, with a member of staff.

"Police were also on site quickly to assist. As a result of this response and with the support of the police, the incident was under control within five minutes and everybody was kept safe.

"Parents and carers were kept updated throughout the incident. Nobody was harmed or injured during the incident and the young person is now in police custody. There is no further threat and the school day has continued as normal.

“We would like to express our thanks to staff, students and parents for their support and cooperation and the superb way in which our whole community responded to this incident.”