‘No one thinks about the murderer and what he’s done to his own life and family’

Detective Constable Thomas Ryan, who works in the major crime unit at South Yorkshire Police
DC Ryan is asking people who carry a knife to consider the impact it could have on their own, and their families, lives -Credit:SYP

A detective from Sheffield has released a book highlighting that “the family and friends of the person who has been killed are not the only victims” when a murder happens.

When someone is fatally stabbed, everyone grieves with the family of the person killed. But Detective Constable Thomas Ryan, who works in the major crime unit at South Yorkshire Police , wants people to think more about what the consequences are for people who commit murder, and the impact this has on their families - especially if you are someone who carries a knife.

DC Ryan, who has worked in reactive CID across the city for over ten years, explained that he has been in charge of several serious investigations - many of which involved extreme violence being inflicted by the use of a knife.

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He said: “For the last three years I have worked in our major crime unit and have been in charge of four murder investigations. These have all involved the use of a knife, and left five young men dead, with their attackers who are also young men or even boys, spending a long time behind bars.

“Everyone has sympathy for the victim and holds righteous anger towards the murderer who has done this to them and caused such pain to their family. But the family and friends of the person who has been killed are not the only victims.

“Have you ever thought of what the murderer has done to himself? What pain he has caused his own family? Who weeps for the mother who grieves the loss of her son as he begins a prison sentence that will last decades? More importantly, does the young man ever think of the effect that him using a knife will have on his own life?”

Following the violence and grief seen first-hand, DC Ryan knew he had to do something. He added: “By the time the murder happens, and I become involved, it is too late to save the victim’s life or the murderer’s future.

“People will think it’s strange that I’m talking about saving the life of the murderer, but their life is also over once they kill, as they will spend most of their life in prison when we catch them – and we will catch them.”

He has now written a book to “make it clear” to young men and boys who carry a knife that if they stab someone, their actions will have wider consequences beyond those which impact the victim. DC Ryan said: “They will not only be hurting their victim but they will also be hurting themselves and their own family.

In addition to the book, DC Ryan has released a chilling video in which he highlights the timeline of events from the first moment someone decides to carry a knife, to the day they commit a fatal stabbing and are subsequently put behind bars.

He continued: “It may seem obvious; however, the reality is that at the time of the stabbing, the defendants that I have dealt with throughout my career were only thinking about hurting their victims. It did not occur to them what effect their actions would have on themselves.

“I am not asking young men not to do the stabbing; I don’t think they would listen to me if I did. I just want them to be fully aware of what will happen to their own lives should they decide to stab someone.”

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