South Yorkshire police and political leaders alarmed by unprecedented number of killings

Bouquets of flowers mark the spot where 15-year-old Samuel Baker was murdered three weeks ago. Balloons, candles and handwritten notes are tied neatly to a sign on the Sheffield estate where the football-mad teenager was fatally stabbed in the chest, making him the youngest victim of a surge in violence across the city.

A series of mostly-unconnected feuds has left South Yorkshire police facing what they called an “almost unprecedented” demand: five murders in just 13 days last month; six including a fatal stabbing in March.

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