Police officers have issued a stern warning to parents after a home-made knuckle duster was 'dropped by youths'.

Officers from the Castle Point and Rochford Community Policing Team and the Local Policing Team were called to a disturbance at Clarence Road, Rayleigh just after midnight last night (Saturday March 23).

Initially officers were unable to locate anyone but a patrol of the area located three young teenage males in Albany Road.

They ran off from police and officers retraced the route and a home-made knuckle duster was found on the ground in Warwick Road.

Police officers took to social media to warn about the potentially fatal risks of carrying such a dangerous weapon.

A spokesman for the CPT said: "Although police cannot 100 per cent prove this weapon was dropped by the youths, it is highly likely.

"Parents urgently need to speak to their children and advise against the dangers of carrying a weapon. It is only a matter of time before a serious assault occurs, even a fatality."

Anyone with information should contact Essex Police on 101.