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Knife crime epidemic 'can touch anyone' says ITV weather presenter Alex Beresford, following the death of his cousin

Alex Beresford speaking to ITV News. Credit: ITV News

Knife crime "can touch anyone", ITV weather presenter Alex Beresford has said following the death of his 29-year-old cousin who was fatally stabbed.

Nathaniel Armstrong was killed in west London in the early hours of Saturday, 100 metres from his home.

His death came just 11 days after Mr Beresford made an impassioned speech about street violence on Good Morning Britain.

During the programme, the presenter made an off camera interjection as Police Federation Chair John Apter said more prisons were needed.

"Prisons don't work," Mr Beresford said as in intervened in the debate.

"Prison is not a deterrent, some of these boys they don't fear prison," he said.

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Police are yet to make any arrests in relation to Mr Armstrong's death and have urged the public to come forward with any information they might have.

In a statement Detective Chief Inspector Glen Lloyd, said: "I am still eager to hear from anyone who was in the area of Gowan Avenue shortly after midnight on Saturday. Any information you have could be vital in establishing what happened that night."

Nathaniel Armstrong was stabbed around 100 metres from his Fulham home. Credit: PA

Speaking after his cousin's death the presenter told ITV News: "You don't have to be in a gang in order to end up in a situation like this."

He said the solution to knife crime involved looking at "poverty" and addressing the "environment" people who carry knives, are living in.

He said: "If we don't fix the environment, if we don't look at poverty, if we don't address all of those issues, and fix them once in for all then I always think that this is the likely outcome for a lot of boys that are growing up in deprived areas that follow the path that they think has been laid out for them but there is always another choice."

He also called on the media to focus more on the "great role models" within the black community.

He said: "Now I've grown up in the black community my whole life and I know that there are more good people, more great role models that completely outweigh what we see in the media and we work in the media and I see it on a daily basis.

"I'd like to see more black boys making the news for getting a first from Cambridge but we're not hearing about those stories.

"We don't get to hear about the unsung heroes, we don't get to hear about the dad that gets up everyday and just does what normal people do."

He explained that such stories would "reinforce the message" that "'you can be successful'".

Mr Beresford is not the first to ask for the discussion around knife crime to be improved.

Rapper and author Akala called out double standards during knife crime debate on Good Morning Britain

On Monday, rapper and author Akala called for there to be a shift away from race being a constant focus in the knife crime debate.

He told Good Morning Britain "when you think blackness is the most important thing to emphasise about these young men, almost half of the young people in prison in Britain, regardless of ethnicity, were in care as children".

The full scale of Britain's knife crime crisis was laid bare last week with new figures showing one in five offenders being aged under 18.

The number of criminals caught with knives or dangerous weapons has hit its highest level in nearly a decade, according to official figures.