THE families of Daniel Fox and Adam Ellison have expressed dismay after their online petition calling for tougher sentences for carrying a knife came to a halt because of the general election.

The relatives put together an online petition calling for sentencing for possession of a knife in a public place to be equal to that of possession of a firearm in a public place.

Daniel Fox, from Thatto Heath who died from a stab wound in September 2016 in St Helens and Adam Ellison from Prescot died in similar circumstances in November 2017.

The petition has 75,000 signatures, just 25,000 short of the 100,000 needed to force the government to consider it for a debate in Parliament, but this morning it was ended suddenly due to the election.

A post on the page says: “This petition closed early because of a General Election. Find out more on the Petitions Committee website.”

On hearing the news the families of Danny and Adam have vowed to unite with other families affected by knife crime to put an end to the “constant killing on our streets”.

Dawn Jones, Daniel Fox’s, aunt said: “I’m just absolutely livid about this, we got 5,000 signatures last night alone, we would have easily got the 100,000 needed by February but because of all of this it’s been stopped for good, not frozen, just stopped.

“I get that the political atmosphere is tense at the moment and that things need sorting, but they are not thinking about the constant killing on our streets; killing our loved ones and hurting others.

“Knife crime needs to be a focus, instead it’s constantly put on a back burner for all of them. If I have to march down to London and knock on the doors of 10 Downing Street then I will do because this problem cannot be continually put off.

“We don’t want more families affected like we have been, that’s what matters.

“If they froze the petition I’d understand but they’ve stopped it and that’s what has made me so furious and disgusted, because 75,000 people want this.

“They have really let us down, it’s so insensitive. Ending this petition is an outrage.”

Nicola Moore, Adam Ellison’s sister, added: “I am outraged that our so called government have closed this petition because of a general election, this is a disgrace.

“If Boris Johnson was walking down the street, or his children were, and they were stabbed I’m sure it would be high on their agenda, but instead because it doesn’t touch them in their ivory towers they feel it’s acceptable to just end petitions months early.

“This is the opposite of a deterrent to those going out with knives, a boy was stabbed near Sherdley Park last night , this is not a small problem and lives are at risk.

“Our family, Daniel Fox’s family and Sam Cook’s family are all in a club. We never asked to be part of, but we work together to do what we can to fight against knife crime and this is just a kick in the teeth from the government.”

A Parliamentary spokesman said: “All Parliamentary business is required to stop once Parliament is dissolved, this includes business such as legislation and questions as well as petitions.

“This is because Parliament ceases to exist during a General Election.

“Once a new Parliament is assembled, any business has to be started again from the beginning, by which point the political situation or context of an issue may have been changed.

“This election was called at short notice, which unfortunately meant that we could not provide petitioners with earlier notice of the site’s closure.

“There will be a new Petitions Committee elected after the general election, which will decide on the operation of the site and its rules.

“The Petitions Committee staff will make the new Committee aware of the complaints we’ve received about this process, and they may want to consider whether any changes can be made in future, but this won’t be able to affect petitions currently on the site.”