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Statistical bulletin: Crime in England and Wales, Year Ending June 2012 This product is designated as National Statistics

Released: 18 October 2012 Download PDF

Crime in England and Wales, year ending June 2012

  • Latest figures from the Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) for the year ending June 2012 show a 6 per cent decrease in overall crime against adults compared with the previous year’s survey. However it is too early to conclude that the latest decrease, following the fairly flat trend seen in recent years, is evidence of an emerging downward trend.
  • Crimes recorded by the police also fell by 6 per cent for the year ending June 2012 compared with the previous year. This continues the downward trend in recorded crime seen since 2004/05.
  • All of the main categories of police recorded crime fell in the year ending June 2012 compared with the previous year. However, the sub-category theft from the person showed a 6 per cent increase.
  • Latest CSEW estimates show statistically significant decreases for incidents of vandalism, vehicle-related theft and burglary with entry, compared with the previous year.

Introduction

This quarterly release presents the most recent crime statistics from two different sources: the Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW, previously known as the British Crime Survey), and police recorded crime. It also draws on data from other sources to provide a more comprehensive picture. In 2009 the CSEW was extended to cover children aged 10-15. Due to the long time series for which comparable data are available, the main analysis and commentary is given for adults and households. A separate section provides a commentary on the figures for children, though these data are at too early a stage to establish trends (Table 22).

Summary

Latest figures from the CSEW for the year ending June 2012 show a 6 per cent decrease in overall crime against adults compared with the previous year’s survey. While the latest estimates represent a statistically significant decrease in CSEW crime after a period of little change the underlying trend remains fairly flat.1 CSEW crime has fallen since peak levels in 1995 though there have been smaller reductions since the 2004/05 survey (Figure 1).

Crimes recorded by the police also fell by 6 per cent for the year ending June 2012 compared with the previous year. Police recorded crime figures continue to show year-on-year reductions and the latest figures are a third lower than 2002/03. All of the latest headline offences for police recorded crime decreased when compared with the previous year (for selected offences see Figure 2).

The overall level of notifiable2 crime recorded by the police dropped to 3.9 million (Table 2). Latest estimates from the CSEW indicate that there were 9.1 million3 offences committed against households and resident adults in England and Wales (Table 1) and 0.9 million against children4 aged 10-15 living in such households.

Violence against the person offences recorded by the police in the year ending June 2012 showed a 6 per cent decrease compared with the previous year, continuing the decline in this offence group observed since 2006/07. Police recorded crime also indicates declines in some of the more serious violent crimes: homicide5 and attempted murder decreased by 14 and 12 per cent respectively compared with the previous year and violence against the person with injury decreased by 8 per cent.

Levels of violent crime estimated by the CSEW showed no statistically significant change in the year ending June 2012 compared with the previous year. This follows on from large falls seen in the CSEW between 1995 and 2004/05 and also shows that estimates of violent crime are around half the level seen in 1995.

Figure 1 Trends in recorded crime and CSEW, 1981 to year ending June 2012

Figure 1 Trends in recorded crime and CSEW, 1981 to year ending June 2012
Source: Crime Survey for England and Wales - Office for National Statistics, Home Office

Notes:

  1. The data on this chart refer to different time periods: a) CSEW - 1981 to 1999, police recorded - 1981 to 1997 refers to the calendar year (January to December). b) CSEW - 2000/01 to 2009/10, police recorded - 1998/99 to 2009/10 refers to the financial year (April to March). c) The last two data points refer to the rolling 12 month time period for the past two years (July to June).

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Figure 2 Selected police recorded crime offences: volumes and percentage change between year ending June 2011 and year ending June 2012

Figure 2 Selected police recorded crime offences: volumes and percentage change between year ending June 2011 and year ending June 2012
Source: Home Office

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Police recorded robberies decreased by 7 per cent in the year ending June 2012 compared with the previous year. With the exception of a notable rise in the number of robberies in 2005/06 and 2006/07 there has been a general downward trend in these offences between 2002/03 and 2009/10. The latest year shows the number of robbery offences falling to 71,444, representing the lowest levels since the introduction of the National Crime Recording Standard (NCRS) in 2002/03.

Robbery offences tend to be concentrated in a small number of metropolitan forces with around half of all offences recorded in London. The decrease in robberies across England and Wales in the year ending June 2012, compared with the previous year, has been driven by falls in robbery in some of the large metropolitan police forces, most notably West Midlands (down 27 per cent) and Greater Manchester (down 14 per cent).

The CSEW estimated that vehicle-related theft showed a statistically significant decrease of 8 per cent compared with the previous year, continuing the decrease shown since 1995. The latest CSEW estimated that a vehicle-owning household was four times less likely to be a victim of vehicle-related theft than in 1995 (5 in 100 households compared with 20 in 100 households in 1995). Police recorded crime figures showed a fall of 8 per cent in offences against vehicles compared with the previous year, continuing the downward trend seen since 2002/03.

Other theft offences recorded by the police in the year ending June 2012 showed a decrease of 2 per cent compared with the previous year. This follows a rise of 5 per cent between the year ending March 2010 and the year ending June 2011.

However, this should be seen in the context that the latest estimate is still 9 per cent down from five years ago. This overall decrease was driven by falls in the offences ‘other theft or unauthorised taking’ and in bicycle theft. However, the sub-category of theft from the person rose by 6 per cent, continuing the increases for this offence seen since 2009/10.

The CSEW estimates for household crime for the year ending June 2012 showed a statistically significant decrease of 7 per cent. This has been driven by statistically significant decreases in vandalism, vehicle-related theft and burglary with entry. Over the past few years other household theft has indicated an apparent upward trend; the latest estimates suggest this increase could be slowing given a 1 per cent non-statistically significant increase.

Around 2.5 million incidents of anti-social behaviour (ASB) were recorded by the police for the year ending June 2012.6 There has been a consistent downward trend in the number of ASB incidents recorded from 2007/08 until 2010/11. Following a change in the classification used for ASB incidents in 2011/12 the latest data are not comparable with previous years.7

In the year ending March 2012 (the latest period for which data are available) there were 1.1 million convictions for non-notifiable offences8 (not covered in the recorded crime collection) and 45,000 Penalty Notices for Disorder were issued in relation to non-notifiable offences.

Table 1 Number of CSEW incidents year ending June 2012 and percentage change

Adults aged 16 and over/households, England and Wales

Number of incidents (thousands), percentage change and significance
    July 2011 to June 2012 compared with:
Jul-11 to Jun-121 Jan-95 to Dec-95 Apr-01 to Mar-02 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11
Vandalism 1,916 -42 * -26 * -34 * -10 *
Burglary 677 -61 * -29 * -4   -9  
Vehicle-related theft incidents 1,135 -73 * -54 * -31 * -8 *
Bicycle theft 459 -30 * 26   -2   -8  
Other household theft 1,335 -40 * -7 * 14   1  
Household acquisitive crime 3,605 -59 * -31 * -9 * -5 *
ALL HOUSEHOLD CRIME 5,521 -55 * -29 * -20 * -7 *
Unweighted base - household crime 42,355                
Theft from the person 595 -13 * -1   4   3  
Other theft of personal property 1,031 -50 * -27 * -10 * -4  
All violence 1,977 -53 * -28 * -20 * -8  
       with injury 1,026 -57 * -31 * -19 * -12  
       without injury 951 -46 * -23 * -21 * -5  
Personal acquisitive crime 1,873 -39 * -21 * -8 * -1  
ALL PERSONAL CRIME 3,603 -48 * -24 * -14 * -5  
Unweighted base - personal crime 42,386                
ALL CSEW CRIME 9,124 -52 * -27 * -18 * -6 *

Table source: Office for National Statistics

Table notes:

  1. Base sizes for data year ending June 2012 are smaller than previous years, due to sample size reductions introduced in April 2012.
  2. Statistically significant change at the 5% level is indicated by an asterisk.
  3. For more information about the crime types included in this table, see Section 5 of the User Guide.

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Table 2 Number of recorded crimes year ending June 2012 and percentage change

England and Wales

Number and percentage change
    July 2011 to June 2012 compared with:
Offence group Jul-11 to Jun-12 Apr-02 to Mar-03 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11
Violence against the person offences 747,448 -12 -29 -6
     Violence against the person - with injury2 328,642 -12 -35 -8
     Violence against the person - without injury3 418,806 -11 -22 -5
Sexual offences 52,178 -11 -9 -5
     Most serious sexual crime 42,976 -5 -2 -5
     Other sexual offences 9,202 -32 -33 0
Robbery offences 71,444 -35 -30 -7
     Robbery of business property 6,654 -40 -30 -10
     Robbery of personal property 64,790 -35 -30 -7
Burglary offences 489,045 -45 -21 -6
     Burglary in a dwelling 239,168 -45 -18 -6
     Burglary in a building other than a dwelling 249,877 -45 -24 -5
Offences against vehicles 405,800 -62 -47 -8
     Theft of a motor vehicle 88,103 -72 -54 -14
     Theft from a vehicle 293,666 -56 -42 -5
     Interfering with a motor vehicle 24,031 -74 -65 -17
Other theft offences4 1,070,983 -20 -9 -2
Fraud and forgery offences5 139,519 -3
Criminal damage offences 598,958 -47 -49 -12
Drug offences 222,520 55 15 -4
Other miscellaneous offences 58,349 -9 -23 -10
TOTAL RECORDED CRIME - ALL OFFENCES 3,856,244 -35 -29 -6
of which: Firearm offences6 5,507 -46 -43 -18

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. Police recorded crime statistics based on data from all 44 forces in England and Wales (including the British Transport Police).
  2. Includes homicide, attempted murder, intentional destruction of viable unborn child, causing death by dangerous driving/careless driving when under the influence of drink or drugs, more serious wounding or other act endangering life (including grievous bodily harm with and without intent), causing death by aggravated vehicle taking and less serious wounding offences.
  3. Includes threat or conspiracy to murder, harassment, possession of weapons, other offences against children and assault without injury (formerly common assault where there is no injury).
  4. Other theft includes a range of offences, including shoplifting and abstraction of electricity.
  5. Due to new offences introduced in January 2007 comparisons can not be made with years prior to 2010/11.
  6. Firearm offences are provisional. Excludes offences involving the use of air weapons and offences recorded by British Transport Police. Includes crimes recorded by police where a firearm has been fired, used as a blunt instrument against a person or used as a threat.

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Notes for Summary

  1. See section ‘Further analysis of the change in overall crime reported in the CSEW’ for more details.

  2. Notifiable offences include all offences that could possibly be tried by a jury (these include some less serious offences, such as minor theft that would not usually be dealt with in this way) plus a few additional closely related offences, such as assault without injury.

  3. See section ‘Data Sources – further information’ for more details regarding the data sources and reasons for the differences in the number of crimes seen by each data source.

  4. Using the preferred measure, for more detail on this measure see the section on crime experienced by children aged 10-15.

  5. Homicide includes the offences of murder, manslaughter and infanticide. Homicide data are provisional figures supplied by the police as at 3 September 2012. Final figures from the Homicide Index for the time period April 2011 to March 2012, which takes account of further police investigations and court outcomes, will be published on 7 February 2013.

  6. ASB incidents recorded by the police are not accredited as National Statistics and not subject to the same consistency and quality of recording as police recorded crime.

  7. For more information regarding the changes see section 5.7 of the User Guide.

  8. Non-notifiable offences are not covered by the main police recorded crime collection. These are offences dealt with by the issuing of a Penalty Notice for Disorder, a Fixed Penalty Notice or a magistrates court. Along with non-notifiable offences dealt with by the police (such as speeding), these include many offences that may be dealt with by other agencies – for example, prosecutions by TV Licensing or by the DVLA for vehicle registration offences.

Time periods covered

The latest Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) figures presented in this release are based on interviews conducted between July 2011 and June 2012, measuring each respondents experiences of crime in the 12 months before the interview. It therefore covers a rolling reference period with, for example respondents interviewed at the start of the year reporting on crimes experienced between July 2010 and June 2011 and those at the end of the survey period reporting on crimes taking place between June 2011 and May 2012.

For that reason, the CSEW tends to act as a lagging indicator of short-term trends. Recorded crime figures relate to crimes recorded by the police in the year ending June 2012 and therefore are not subject to the time lag experienced by the CSEW. Recorded crime figures presented in this release are those notified to the Home Office and that were contained in the Home Office database on 3rd September 2012. As in previous releases, recorded crime figures remain subject to change as forces continue to submit further data for this time period.

It should also be noted that nine months of the data reported on here overlap with the data contained in the last bulletin. For both sources the headline findings refer to the latest available data covering the 12 month period to the year ending June 2012. Year on year comparisons are made with the previous year, i.e. the 12 month period ending June 2011.

However, to put the latest CSEW year-on-year comparisons in context data are also shown for; the financial year 2006/07 (approximately five years ago); the financial year 2001/02 (approximately ten years ago); and the 1995 calendar year (the peak of CSEW crime, when the survey was conducted on a calendar year basis). Similarly, putting the latest police recorded crime year-on-year comparisons in context data are also shown for; the financial year 2006/07 (approximately five years ago); and the financial year 2002/03 when the National Crime Recording Standard (NCRS) was introduced.

Future quarterly publications will follow the same format presenting the latest two years figures alongside a standard set of longer-term reference points. Once a year (at the time of the quarterly publication in July) all data points (including the current year, previous year and all prior years) will reference the same 12 month period (the financial year).

Appendix tables A1–A4 show the fuller time series.

Overall level of crime

This quarterly release presents the most recent crime statistics from two different sources: the Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW, previously known as the British Crime Survey), and police recorded crime.1 Neither source provides a total count of crime and each has its strengths and weaknesses.2 Other data sources are also drawn on to provide a more comprehensive picture of crime.

The CSEW was extended to cover children aged 10-15 in 2009 but commentary on trends is restricted to crimes against households and adults resident in them. The latest results relating to children can be found in the ‘Crime experienced by children aged 10 to 15’ section.

Based on interviews in the year ending June 2012 there was a statistically significant decrease of 6 per cent in the overall level of CSEW crime compared with the previous year’s survey (Tables 3a and 3b). CSEW estimates of crime have more than halved since peak levels in 1995, representing 10 million fewer crimes (Table 3a). The CSEW currently estimates just over 9.1 million incidents of crime for the year ending June 2012.

The current fall in overall CSEW crime should be seen in context of the generally flat trend seen since 2009/10, and reported in recent quarterly publications. Last quarter, ONS reported no change in levels of CSEW crime (the apparent decrease of 1 per cent being not statistically significant). It is therefore too early to draw firm conclusions as to whether the latest decrease is evidence of an emerging downward trend, or a temporary fluctuation in the data.

Additional analyses of the underlying data is reported in the ‘Further analysis of the change in overall CSEW crime’ section. The CSEW estimates for household crime in the year ending June 2012 also showed a statistically significant decrease (7 per cent). This should be seen in the context of a fairly flat underlying trend over the previous few years (Appendix table A1). The decrease in household crime has been driven by statistically significant decreases in the specific categories of vandalism, vehicle-related theft and burglary with entry.

The overall level of notifiable3  crime recorded by the police decreased by 6 per cent in the year ending June 2012 compared with the previous year (Tables 4a and 4b). This decrease has continued to follow the year-on-year pattern of reduction seen in recent years (Figure 3). There were 3.9 million offences recorded in the year ending June 2012, the lowest number of offences since the introduction of the NCRS in 2002/03. The latest number of offences recorded was 29 per cent lower than 2006/07 and 35 per cent lower than 2002/03 (Tables 4a and 4b).

Figure 3 shows the time-series for both data sources. CSEW crime rose steadily from 1981 to 1991, before peaking in 1995 (Figure 3). Subsequently, the CSEW showed marked falls up to the 2004/05 survey. Since then the rate of reduction has slowed with some fluctuation from year to year.

Figure 3 Trends in recorded crime and CSEW, 1981 to year ending June 2012

Figure 3 Trends in recorded crime and CSEW, 1981 to year ending June 2012
Source: Crime Survey for England and Wales - Office for National Statistics, Home Office

Notes:

  1. The data on this chart refer to different time periods: a) CSEW - 1981 to 1999, police recorded - 1981 to 1997 refers to the calendar year (January to December). b) CSEW - 2000/01 to 2009/10, police recorded - 1998/99 to 2009/10 refers to the financial year (April to March). c) The last two data points refer to the rolling 12 month time period for the past two years (July to June).

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Recorded crime also increased during most of the 1980s, reaching a peak in 1992, and then fell each year until 1998/99 when the expanded coverage and changes in the Home Office Counting Rules resulted in an increase in recorded offences; see Chapter 3 of the User Guide. This was followed by the introduction of the National Crime Recording Standard (NCRS) in April 2002 which led to a rise in recording in 2002/03 and 2003/04. Following the bedding in of these changes, trends have been generally more consistent between the two series since 2003/04, with the exception of some short term fluctuations in recent years.

Police recorded crime figures in this publication include the month of August 2011 when there were disturbances in a number of urban areas in England. As reported in previous analysis, at the national level the impact on police recorded figures was small.4

Table 3a All CSEW crime - number of incidents

Adults aged 16 and over/households, England and Wales

  Interviews from:    
Jan-95 to Dec-95 Apr-01 to Mar-02 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11 Jul-11 to Jun-121
Total CSEW incidents (thousands) 19,109 12,532 11,060 9,718 9,124
Unweighted base 16,337 32,787 47,138 47,427 42,386

Table source: Office for National Statistics

Table notes:

  1. Base sizes for data year ending June 2012 are smaller than previous years, due to sample size reductions introduced in April 2012.
  2. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix tables A1, A2, A3.

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Table 3b All CSEW crime - percentage change and statistical significance

Adults aged 16 and over/households, England and Wales

Percentage change and significance
  July 2011 to June 2012 compared with:
Jan-95 to Dec-95 Apr-01 to Mar-02 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11
Total CSEW incidents -52 * -27 * -18 * -6 *

Table source: Office for National Statistics

Table notes:

  1. Statistically significant change at the 5% level is indicated by an asterisk.
  2. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix tables A1, A2, A3.

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Table 4a Total police recorded crime - number and rate of offences

England and Wales

  Apr-02 to Mar-03 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11 Jul-11 to Jun-12
Total recorded crime - all offences 5,974,960 5,427,558 4,097,507 3,856,244
Total rate per 1,000 population 115 102 75 70

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. Police recorded crime statistics based on data from all 44 forces in England and Wales (including the British Transport Police).
  2. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix table A4.

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Table 4b Total police recorded crime - percentage change

England and Wales

Percentage change
    July 2011 to June 2012 compared with:
Apr-02 to Mar-03 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11
Total recorded crime - all offences -35 -29 -6

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix table A4.

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Notes for Overall level of crime

  1. It should be noted that police recorded crime has wider offence coverage than the CSEW as for example, it includes crimes against businesses and non-residents (e.g. visitors, tourists), however, it does not include crimes that have not been reported to the police.

  2. See section Data Sources – further information: Strengths and limitations of the Crime Survey and police recorded crime.

  3. Notifiable offences include all offences that could possibly be tried by a jury (these include some less serious offences, such as minor theft that would not usually be dealt with in this way) plus a few additional closely related offences, such as assault without injury.

  4. Annex B of the January release ‘Crime in England and Wales: Quarterly Update to September 2011’ (Home Office, 2012a), outlines the impact the recording of these events had on police recorded crime statistics.

Violence

Violent crime covers a wide range of offences, from minor assaults such as pushing and shoving that result in no physical harm through to serious incidents of wounding and murder. Robbery, an offence in which violence or the threat of violence is used during a theft (or attempted theft) is not included in the police recorded violence against the person offence group as it is reported separately in the robbery section, but it is included within CSEW violence. Estimates of violence, from the CSEW, against 10 to 15 year olds can be found in the ‘Crime experienced by children aged 10 to 15’ section of this publication.

The CSEW showed no statistically significant change in the levels of violence (the apparent 8 per cent decrease was not statistically significant) based on interviews in the year ending June 2012 compared with the previous year (Tables 5a and 5b). The latest CSEW estimates show there were just below 2 million violent incidents in England and Wales, and that levels have been fairly stable since the 2007/08 survey (Figure 4).

Figure 4 Trends in CSEW violence, 1981 to year ending June 2012

Figure 4 Trends in CSEW violence, 1981 to year ending June 2012
Source: Crime Survey for England and Wales - Office for National Statistics

Notes:

  1. The data on this chart refer to different time periods: a) 1981 to 1999 refers to the calendar year (January to December). b) 2001/02 to 2009/10 refer to the financial year (April to March). c) The last two data points refer to the rolling 12 month time period for the past two years (July to June).

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Figure 4 shows increases in the number of violent incidents measured by the CSEW from the early eighties to 1995. This was followed by a period of steep decreases, with the latest estimates being 20 per cent lower than those observed from the 2006/07 survey, and 53 per cent lower than in 1995. The CSEW estimated nearly 3 in every 100 adults were a victim of violent crime in the last year, according to the year ending June 2012 survey, compared with just over 5 in 100 adults in the 1995 survey.

The level of violence against the person1 recorded by the police in the year ending June 2012 showed a 6 per cent fall compared with the previous year (Tables 6a and 6b). Offences of violence with injury decreased by 8 per cent while offences involving no injury fell by 5 per cent. This is consistent with the downward trend seen since 2006/07. The latest levels of violence against the person have fallen by 29 per cent from 2006/07, and by 12 per cent from 2002/03.

The police recorded crime figures for the year ending June 2012 also show notable declines in some of the more serious violent crimes (Appendix table A4). Most notably:

  • The number of homicides2 recorded by the police in the year ending June 2012 (545) fell by 14 percent compared with the previous year (632). The number of homicides increased from around 300 per year in the early 1960s to over 800 per year in the early years of this century before falling to current levels. (For more information on homicide trends see Crime in England and Wales: Quarterly first release to March).3 

  • The number of attempted murders recorded by the police also fell, down by 12 per cent in the year ending June 2012 compared with the previous year (from 513 to 453 offences).

  • Due to a change in recording practices from April 2012 grievous bodily harm with intent (GBH) and actual bodily harm (ABH) cannot be compared over time.

Separate research conducted by the Violence and Society Research Group at Cardiff University (Sivarajasingam et al., 2011) also indicates falls in the levels of violent crime. Findings from their annual survey, covering a sample of emergency departments and walk-in centres in England and Wales, showed an overall decrease of 4 per cent in violence-related attendances in 2011 compared with 2010.

This pattern is consistent with the reductions in violent crime recorded by the police. In addition, NHS data on assault admissions to hospitals in England show that for the 12 months to the end of March 20124 there were 38,766 hospital admissions for assault, a reduction of 6 per cent compared with figures for the preceding 12 months.

Table 5a CSEW violence – number, rate and percentage of incidents

Adults ages 16 and over, England and Wales

  Interviews from:
Jan-95 to Dec-95 Apr-01 to Mar-02 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11 Jul-11 to Jun-121
Number of incidents Thousands        
All CSEW violence 4,176 2,728 2,473 2,157 1,977
       with injury 2,408 1,497 1,271 1,159 1,026
       without injury 1,768 1,231 1,202 998 951
Incidence rate per 1,000 adults          
All CSEW violence 103 65 57 48 44
       with injury 59 36 29 26 23
       without injury 43 29 28 22 21
Percentage of adults who were victims once or more Percentage      
All CSEW violence 5.3 3.8 3.6 3.1 2.8
       with injury 3.2 2.2 2.0 1.7 1.6
       without injury 2.5 1.9 1.8 1.5 1.4
Unweighted base - personal crime 16,337 32,787 47,138 47,427 42,386

Table source: Office for National Statistics

Table notes:

  1. Base sizes for data year ending June 2012 are smaller than previous years, due to sample size reductions introduced in April 2012.

  2. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix tables A1, A2, A3.

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Table 5b CSEW violence - percentage change and statistical significance

Adults aged 16 and over, England and Wales

  July 2011 to June 2012 compared with:
Jan-95 to Dec-95 Apr-01 to Mar-02 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11
Number of incidents Percentage change and significance1  
All CSEW violence -53 * -28 * -20 * -8  
       with injury -57 * -31 * -19 * -12  
       without injury -46 * -23 * -21 * -5  
Incidence rate per 1,000 adults                
All CSEW violence -57 * -33 * -23 * -9  
       with injury -62 * -37 * -22 * -12  
       without injury -52 * -29 * -24 * -5  
Percentage of adults who were victims once or more Percentage point change and significance1,2  
All CSEW violence -2.5 * -1.0 * -0.7 * -0.3  
       with injury -1.6 * -0.6 * -0.4 * -0.2  
       without injury -1.1 * -0.5 * -0.4 * -0.1  

Table source: Office for National Statistics

Table notes:

  1. Statistically significant change at the 5% level is indicated by an asterisk.
  2. The percentage point change presented in the tables may differ from subtraction of the two percentages due to rounding.
  3. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix tables A1, A2, A3.

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Table 6a Police recorded violence - number and rate of offences

England and Wales

  Apr-02 to Mar-03 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11 Jul-11 to Jun-12
Violence against the person offences 845,078 1,046,167 796,693 747,448
     Violence against the person - with injury2 372,124 506,594 356,468 328,642
     Violence against the person - without injury3 472,954 539,573 440,225 418,806
Violence against the person rate per 1,000 population 16 20 15 14

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. Police recorded crime statistics based on data from all 44 forces in England and Wales (including the British Transport Police).
  2. Includes homicide, attempted murder, intentional destruction of viable unborn child, causing death by dangerous driving/careless driving when under the influence of drink or drugs, more serious wounding or other act endangering life (including grievous bodily harm with and without intent), causing death by aggravated vehicle taking and less serious wounding offences.
  3. Includes threat or conspiracy to murder, harassment, possession of weapons, other offences against children and assault without injury (formerly common assault where there is no injury).
  4. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix table A4.

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Table 6b Police recorded violence - percentage change

England and Wales

    July 2011 to June 2012 compared with:
Apr-02 to Mar-03 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11
Violence against the person offences -12 -29 -6
     Violence against the person - with injury1 -12 -35 -8
     Violence against the person - without injury2 -11 -22 -5

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. Includes homicide, attempted murder, intentional destruction of viable unborn child, causing death by dangerous driving/careless driving when under the influence of drink or drugs, more serious wounding or other act endangering life (including grievous bodily harm with and without intent), causing death by aggravated vehicle taking and less serious wounding offences.
  2. Includes threat or conspiracy to murder, harassment, possession of weapons, other offences against children and assault without injury (formerly common assault where there is no injury).
  3. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix table A4.

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Notes for Violence

  1. Unlike the CSEW measure of violence, police recorded violence against the person does not include sexual offences or robbery but does include a range of state based offences such as possession of weapons. Refer to section 5 of the User Guide for more information regarding coverage of crime measures.

  2. Homicide includes the offences of murder, manslaughter and infanticide. Homicide data are provisional figures supplied by the police as at 3 September 2012. Final figures from the Homicide Index for the time period April 2011 to March 2012, which takes account of further police investigations and court outcomes, will be published on 7 February 2013.

  3. Homicide figures were not thought to be affected by changes in police recording practice so it is possible to examine longer-term trends from police recorded crime.

  4. Based on the latest available Hospital Episode Statistics.

Robbery

Robbery is an offence in which force or the threat of force is used either during or immediately prior to a theft or attempted theft. The small number of robbery victims interviewed in any one year means that CSEW estimates are prone to fluctuation. The number of robberies recorded by the police provides a more robust indication of trends than the CSEW.

Robbery is a relatively low volume crime accounting for around 2 per cent of all police recorded crime. These offences are concentrated in a small number of metropolitan forces with around half of all offences recorded in London, and a further 15 per cent in the Greater Manchester and West Midlands Police force areas. 

Figure 5 Trends in police recorded robberies, 2002/03 to year ending June 2012

Figure 5 Trends in police recorded robberies, 2002/03 to year ending June 2012
Source: Home Office

Notes:

  1. The data on this chart refer to different time periods: a) 2002/03 to 2009/10 refers to the financial year (April to March). b) The last two data points refer to the rolling 12 month time period for the past two years (July to June).

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The latest figures show police recorded robberies decreased by 7 per cent in the year ending June 2012 compared with the previous year (Tables 7a and 7b). With the exception of a notable rise in the number of robberies in 2005/06 and 2006/07 there was a general downward trend between 2003/04 and 2009/10. The latest figure shows the number of robbery offences falling to 71,444 representing the lowest levels since the introduction of the NCRS in 2002/03 (Figure 5).

In the year ending June 2012, 91 per cent of robberies recorded by the police were of personal property. The police recorded 64,790 of these offences, down 7 per cent compared with the previous year. Robbery of business property (which makes up the remaining 9 per cent of total robbery offences) fell by 10 per cent compared with the previous year continuing a recent downward trend. In the year ending June 2012, 22 per cent of robberies recorded by the police involved a knife or other sharp instrument, showing no change from the previous year (Table 8).

Table 7a Police recorded robbery - number and rate of offences

England and Wales

  Apr-02 to Mar-03 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11 Jul-11 to Jun-12
Robbery offences 110,271 101,376 76,852 71,444
     Robbery of business property 11,066 9,454 7,393 6,654
     Robbery of personal property 99,205 91,922 69,459 64,790
Robbery rate per 1,000 population 2 2 1 1

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. Police recorded crime statistics based on data from all 44 forces in England and Wales (including the British Transport Police).
  2. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix table A4.

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Table 7b Police recorded robbery - percentage change

England and Wales

    July 2011 to June 2012 compared with:
Apr-02 to Mar-03 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11
Robbery offences -35 -30 -7
     Robbery of business property -40 -30 -10
     Robbery of personal property -35 -30 -7

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix table A4.

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The geographic concentration of robbery means that trends across England and Wales tend to reflect what is happening in a small number of metropolitan areas, and the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) area in particular. The latest figures for the MPS showed that robbery levels for the year ending June 2012 were similar to those recorded in the previous year, showing that the previous rises seen in the MPS for robbery offences have stopped. The decrease across England and Wales for the year ending June 2012 compared with the previous year, has been driven by falls in robbery in other large metropolitan police forces, most notably West Midlands (down 27 per cent) and Greater Manchester (down 14 per cent) ( Police force area data tables, table P1 (485.5 Kb Excel sheet) ).

Offences involving knives and sharp instruments

Data for selected serious offences recorded by the police involving the use of a knife or sharp instrument have been collected for a number of years.1 Only data for the last two years are compared in this section because up until April 2010 there were known inconsistencies in recording practices between forces.2

In the year ending June 2012, the police recorded 29,513 offences involving a knife or sharp instrument, a 9 per cent decrease compared with the previous year (Table 8). Analysis of selected individual offence groups shows that the fall in knife or sharp instrument offences is largely due to reductions in the numbers of robbery offences using a knife or sharp instrument (down 8 per cent compared with the previous year) and ABH and GBH offences3 (down 10 per cent) consistent with the overall reductions in these offences.

Table 8 Number and proportion of selected violent and sexual offences involving a knife or sharp instrument recorded by the police<2>

Numbers and percentages, England and Wales

Selected offence type   Number of selected offences involving a knife or sharp instrument % change year ending June 2011 to year ending June 2012 Proportion of selected offences involving a knife or sharp instrument
  Jul-10 to Jun-11 Jul-11 to Jun-12 Jul-10 to Jun-11 Jul-11 to Jun-12
             
Attempted murder   236 235 0 46 52
Threats to kill   1,344 1,145 -15 15 15
Actual bodily harm & grievous bodily harm4   13,584 12,198 -10 4 4
Robbery   16,840 15,470 -8 22 22
Rape   259 207 -20 2 1
Sexual assault5   103 65 -37 0 0
             
Total selected offences   32,366 29,320 -9 7 7
             
Homicide6   235 193 -18 36 39
             
Total selected offences including homicide   32,601 29,513 -9 7 7
             

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. Police recorded crime statistics based on data from all 44 forces in England and Wales (including the British Transport Police).
  2. Police recorded knife and sharp instrument offences data are submitted via an additional special collection. Proportions of offences involving the use of a knife or sharp instrument presented in this table are calculated based on figures submitted in this special collection. Other offences exist that are not shown in this table that may include the use of a knife or sharp instrument.
  3. Three police forces include unbroken bottle and glass offences in their returns, which are outside the scope of this special collection. As such, data for these forces are not directly comparable to data for other forces. The three forces are: Surrey, Sussex and British Transport Police.
  4. Changes to offence codes in April 2012 mean the category of actual bodily harm and grievous bodily harm is not directly comparable over the time period. However, these changes are not expected to affect the totals presented in this table. See Table A4 for more details.
  5. Sexual assault includes indecent assault on a male/female and sexual assault on a male/female (all ages).
  6. Homicide offences are those currently recorded by the police as at 3 September 2012 and are subject to revision as cases are dealt with by the police and by the courts, or as further information becomes available.

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The number of offences involving a knife or sharp instrument also decreased among all other specified crime groups in the year ending June 2012 compared with the previous year, with the exception of attempted murder which showed little change. The relatively low number of attempted murders, homicides, rapes and sexual assaults that involve the use of a knife or sharp instrument means percentage changes based on small numbers should be interpreted with caution.

The proportion of selected violent offences involving a knife or sharp instrument in the year ending June 2012 was 7 per cent, the same proportion as in the year ending June 2011 (Table 8).

Over half of all attempted murders involved the use of a knife or sharp instrument and 39 per cent of homicides involved a knife or sharp instrument in the year ending June 2012.

Notes for Offences involving knives and sharp instruments

  1. A sharp instrument is any object that pierces the skin (or in the case of a threat, is capable of piercing the skin) e.g. a broken bottle.

  2. West Midlands Police force included unbroken bottle and glass offences in their returns but now exclude these offences in line with other forces.

  3. Changes to offence codes in April 2012 mean the category of actual bodily harm and grievous bodily harm is not directly comparable over the time period. However, these changes are not expected to affect the totals presented in this table. See Appendix table A4 for more details.

Offences involving firearms

Provisional1 statistics for the year ending June 2012 are available for police recorded crimes involving the use of firearms other than air weapons (referred to as ‘firearm offences’). Firearms are taken to be involved in an offence if they are fired, used as a blunt instrument against a person or used as a threat.

Provisional figures for the year ending June 2012 show that 5,507 firearm offences were recorded in England and Wales, an 18 per cent decrease on the previous year (6,694) (Tables 9a and 9b).

Figure 6 shows the trend from 2002/03 and indicates that since 2005/06 there has been a general decrease in the number of firearm offences over time (Smith et al., 2012). The number of offences involving firearms recorded by the police has fallen by 43 per cent from 2006/07 (Table 9b).

Figure 6 Trends in police recorded crimes involving firearms other than air weapons, 2002/03 to year ending June 2012

Figure 6 Trends in police recorded crimes involving firearms other than air weapons, 2002/03 to year ending June 2012
Source: Home Office

Notes:

  1. The data on this chart refer to different time periods: a) 2002/03 to 2009/10 refers to the financial year (April to March). b) The last two data points refer to the rolling 12 month time period for the past two years (July to June).

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Table 9a Police recorded firearm offences<2> – numbers

England and Wales

  Apr-02 to Mar-03 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11 Jul-11 to Jun-12
Firearm offences 10,248 9,645 6,694 5,507

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. Police recorded crime statistics based on data from all 44 forces in England and Wales (including the British Transport Police).

  2. Firearms are provisional. Excludes offences involving the use of air weapons and offences recorded by British Transport Police. Includes crimes recorded by police where a firearm has been fired, used as a blunt instrument against a person or used as a threat.
  3. For detailed footnotes and futher years see Appendix table A4.

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Table 9b Police recorded firearm offences<1> - percentage change

England and Wales

  July 2011 to June 2012 compared with:
Apr-02 to Mar-03 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11
Firearm offences -46 -43 -18

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. Firearms data are provisional. Excludes offences involving the use of air weapons and offences recorded by British Transport Police. Includes crimes recorded by police where a firearm has been fired, used as a blunt instrument against a person or used as a threat.
  2. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix table A4.

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Notes for Offences involving firearms

  1. Firearms data are provisional figures supplied by the police as at 22 August 2012. Final figures for firearm offences for the time period April 2011 to March 2012 will be published early in 2013.

Sexual offences

It is difficult to obtain reliable information on the extent of sexual offences as it is known that a high proportion of offences are not reported to the police and increases in recorded figures may reflect changes in reporting rates rather than victimisation. For these reasons, caution should be used when interpreting trends in these offences (for more information see Chaplin et al., 2011).

Police recorded crime figures showed a fall of 5 per cent in all sexual offences for the year ending June 2012 compared with the previous year (Tables 10a and 10b). The most serious sexual crime (including rape and sexual assault) also decreased over the same period (by 5 per cent).

This latest reduction follows rises in the number of sexual offences recorded by the police in 2009/10 and 2010/11 preceded by longer term reductions since 2005/06 (Appendix table A4). Extra guidance for the recording of sexual offences was incorporated into the Home Office Counting Rules from 1 April 2010 and this reflected good practice guidance issued prior to this by the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO). This is likely to have been a factor driving year-on-year increases seen in the number of sexual offences recorded in 2009/10 and 2010/11.

Table 10a Police recorded sexual offences - number and rate of offences

England and Wales

  Apr-02 to Mar-03 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11 Jul-11 to Jun-12
Sexual offences 58,890 57,522 54,661 52,178
     Most serious sexual crime 45,317 43,738 45,445 42,976
     Other sexual offences 13,573 13,784 9,216 9,202
Sexual offences rate per 1,000 population 1 1 1 1

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. Police recorded crime statistics based on data from all 44 forces in England and Wales (including the British Transport Police).
  2. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix table A4.

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Table 10b Police recorded sexual offences - percentage change

Percentage change, England and Wales

  July 2011 to June 2012 compared with:
Apr-02 to Mar-03 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11
Sexual offences -11 -9 -5
     Most serious sexual crime -5 -2 -5
     Other sexual offences -32 -33 0

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix table A4.

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Due to the small number of sexual offences identified in the main CSEW crime count, results are too unreliable to report. Since 2004/05, the CSEW has included a self-completion questionnaire module on intimate violence1. Findings from this module for the year ending March 2012 CSEW are summarised in the Annual trend and demographic tables D15-D17 (1.33 Mb Excel sheet) . More detailed data on intimate violence will be published by ONS on 7th February 2013.

Notes for Sexual offences

  1. See section 5 of the User Guide for more information regarding intimate violence.

Burglary

Despite some fluctuations from year to year, the underlying trend in burglary has remained fairly flat in the CSEW since 2004/05 (Figure 7). The apparent 9 per cent fall based on CSEW interviews in the year ending June 2012 compared with the previous year was not statistically significant (Tables 11a and 11b).

However, the sub-category ‘burglary with entry’1 has shown a statistically significant decrease of 14 per cent compared to the previous year (Appendix table A1). CSEW burglary has contributed to the pattern seen for overall CSEW crime, peaking in the 1995 survey and then falling steeply until the 2004/05 survey.

Figure 7 Trends in CSEW domestic burglary, 1981 to year ending June 2012

Figure 7 Trends in CSEW domestic burglary, 1981 to year ending June 2012
Source: Crime Survey for England and Wales - Office for National Statistics

Notes:

  1. The data on this chart refer to different time periods: a) 1981 to 1999 refers to the calendar year (January to December). b) 2001/02 to 2009/10 refers to the financial year (April to March). c) The last two data points refer to the rolling 12 month time period for the past two years (July to June).

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Prior to 2004/05 there were notable declines in CSEW burglary, and estimates from the year ending June 2012 survey are 29 per cent lower than those in the 2001/02 survey, and 61 per cent lower than the 1995 survey. This reduction is reflected in the percentage of households that had been victims of burglary in the last year, with just over 2 in 100 households being victims in the year to June 2012 survey compared with just over 6 in 100 households in the 1995 survey. Households are thus now three times less likely to be a victim of burglary than in 1995 (Table 11a).

Comparing the number of offences in the year ending June 2012 with the previous year, police recorded burglary in a dwelling decreased by 6 per cent while burglary in a building other than a dwelling2 decreased by 5 per cent (Tables 12a and 12b). The latest level of burglary recorded by the police is 45 per cent lower than in 2002/03.

Table 11a CSEW burglary – number, rate and percentage of incidents

Households, England and Wales

  Interviews from:
Jan-95 to Dec-95 Apr-01 to Mar-02 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11 Jul-11 to Jun-121
  Thousands      
Number of burglary incidents 1,735 958 703 743 677
Burglary incidence rate per 1,000 households 84 44 31 32 29
  Percentage      
Percentage of households that were victims of burglary once or more 6.4 3.4 2.5 2.5 2.3
Unweighted base - household crime 16,310 32,370 47,027 47,401 42,355

Table source: Office for National Statistics

Table notes:

  1. Base sizes for data year ending June 2012 are smaller than previous years, due to sample size reductions introduced in April 2012.
  2. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix tables A1, A2, A3.

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Table 11b CSEW burglary – percentage change and statistical significance

Households, England and Wales

  July 2011 to June 2012 compared with:
Jan-95 to Dec-95 Apr-01 to Mar-02 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11
  Percentage change and significance1  
Number of burglary incidents -61 * -29 * -4   -9  
Burglary incidence rate per 1,000 households -66 * -35 * -8   -10  
  Percentage point change and significance1,2
Percentage of households that were victims of burglary once or more -4.1 * -1.1 * -0.3 * -0.3 *

Table source: Office for National Statistics

Table notes:

  1. Statistically significant change at the 5% level is indicated by an asterisk.
  2. The percentage point change presented in the tables may differ from subtraction of the two percentages due to rounding.
  3. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix tables A1, A2, A3.

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Table 12a Police recorded burglary - number and rate of offences

England and Wales

  Apr-02 to Mar-03 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11 Jul-11 to Jun-12
Burglary offences 890,099 622,012 519,012 489,045
     Burglary in a dwelling 437,583 292,260 255,169 239,168
     Burglary in a building other than a dwelling 452,516 329,752 263,843 249,877
Burglary rate per 1,000 population 17 12 9 9

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. Police recorded crime statistics based on data from all 44 forces in England and Wales (including the British Transport Police).
  2. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix table A4.

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Table 12b Police recorded burglary - percentage change

England and Wales

percentage change
  July 2011 to June 2012 compared with:
Apr-02 to Mar-03 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11
Burglary offences -45 -21 -6
     Burglary in a dwelling -45 -18 -6
     Burglary in a building other than a dwelling -45 -24 -5

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix table A4.

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Notes for Burglary

  1. Burglary with entry is a term used in the CSEW and comprises burglary where a building was successfully entered, regardless of whether something was stolen or not.

  2. See Section 5.2 of the User Guide for more details regarding this crime type.

Vehicle offences

Estimates from the survey year ending June 2012, showed that CSEW vehicle-related theft1 showed a statistically significant decrease of 8 per cent compared to the previous year (Table 13a and 13b). The latest estimate indicates that there were 1.1 million vehicle-related thefts in England and Wales, a drop of around 100,000 compared with the previous year.

Although the latest estimates showed a statistically significant decrease of 8 per cent the previous quarterly update recorded only a small non-statistically significant increase of 2 per cent for the CSEW year ending March 2012 compared to the previous year. Therefore it is too early to draw firm conclusions as to whether this is an emerging downward trend as the underlying trend in recent years has been fairly flat (see Quarterly tables).

Over the longer term it is evident that the CSEW indicates a consistent downward trend in levels of vehicle-related theft, with the latest estimates being 31 per cent lower than those observed in the 2006/07 survey, and 54 per cent lower than the 2001/02 survey. The rate of reduction in vehicle offences since the mid-1990s has been striking. The latest estimates indicate that a vehicle-owning household was 4 times less likely to become a victim of vehicle-related theft than in 1995, with 5 in 100 households being victims in the year ending June 2012 compared with 20 in 100 households in 1995 (Table 13a).

Figure 8 Trends in CSEW vehicle-related theft, 1981 to year ending June 2012

Figure 8 Trends in CSEW vehicle-related theft, 1981 to year ending June 2012
Source: Crime Survey for England and Wales - Office for National Statistics

Notes:

  1. The data on this chart refer to different time periods: a) 1981 to 1999 refers to the calendar year (January to December). b) 2001/02 to 2009/10 refers to the financial year (April to March). c) The last two data points refer to the rolling 12 month time period for the past two years (July to June).

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Police recorded crime figures showed a fall of 8 per cent in offences against vehicles in the year ending June 2012 compared with the previous year (Tables 14a and 14b). This follows substantial decreases in this offence group with falls of 47 per cent since 2006/07 and 62 per cent compared with 2002/03. These trends are similar to those found in the CSEW. The most recent data show that all three categories of police recorded offences against vehicles continued to fall, with theft of a motor vehicle falling by 14 per cent in the year ending June 2012 compared with the previous year (Appendix table A4).

Table 13a CSEW vehicle offences – number, rate and percentage of incidents

England and Wales

  Interviews from:
Jan-95 to Dec-95 Apr-01 to Mar-02 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11 Jul-11 to Jun-121
  Thousands      
Number of vehicle-related theft incidents 4,266 2,467 1,635 1,228 1,135
Vehicle-related theft incidence rate per 1,000 vehicle-owning households 280 151 93 67 62
  Percentage      
Percentage of vehicle-owning households that were victims of vehicle-related theft once or more 19.7 11.3 7.5 5.5 5.1
Unweighted base - vehicle owners 11,721 25,022 37,526 37,636 33,600

Table source: Office for National Statistics

Table notes:

  1. Base sizes for data year ending June 2012 are smaller than previous years, due to sample size reductions introduced in April 2012.
  2. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix tables A1, A2, A3.

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Table 13b CSEW vehicle offences - percentage change and statistical significance

Vehicle-owning households, England and Wales

  July 2011 to June 2012 compared with:
Jan-95 to Dec-95 Apr-01 to Mar-02 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11
  Percentage change and significance1  
Number of vehicle-related theft incidents -73 * -54 * -31 * -8 *
Vehicle-related theft incidence rate per 1,000 vehicle-owning households -78 * -59 * -33 * -8 *
  Percentage point change and significance1,2  
Percentage of vehicle-owning households that were victims of vehicle-related theft once or more -14.6 * -6.2 * -2.3 * -0.4  

Table source: Office for National Statistics

Table notes:

  1. Statistically significant change at the 5% level is indicated by an asterisk.
  2. The percentage point change presented in the tables may differ from subtraction of the two percentages due to rounding.
  3. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix tables A1, A2, A3.

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Table 14a Police recorded vehicle offences - number and rate of offences

England and Wales

  Apr-02 to Mar-03 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11 Jul-11 to Jun-12
Offences against vehicles 1,074,659 765,015 440,763 405,800
     Theft of a motor vehicle 318,507 193,384 102,898 88,103
     Theft from a vehicle 663,679 502,651 308,893 293,666
     Interfering with a motor vehicle 92,473 68,980 28,972 24,031
Offences against vehicles2 rate per 1,000 population  21 14 8 7

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. Police recorded crime statistics based on data from all 44 forces in England and Wales (including the British Transport Police).
  2. Includes theft of motor vehicle, theft from a vehicle, aggravated vehicle taking and interfering with a motor vehicle.
  3. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix table A4.

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Table 14b Police recorded vehicle offences - percentage change

Percentage change, England and Wales

  July 2011 to June 2012 compared with:
Apr-02 to Mar-03 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11
Offences against vehicles -62 -47 -8
     Theft of a motor vehicle -72 -54 -14
     Theft from a vehicle -56 -42 -5
     Interfering with a motor vehicle -74 -65 -17

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix table A4.

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Notes for Vehicle offences

  1. See Section 5.2 of the User Guide for more details regarding this crime type.

Other theft of property

The CSEW and police recorded crime also measure other theft of household and personal property, in addition to burglary and vehicle-related thefts. In the CSEW this comprises: theft from the person; other theft of personal property; bicycle theft; and other household theft.1 Figure 10 shows trends in selected offences which are the subject of further discussion below.

Although there are substantial overlaps between the two data series the coverage of other theft offences in police recorded crime is broader than that of the CSEW as, for example, it also includes theft against commercial victims and offences of handling stolen goods. The offences that contribute to police recorded other theft crimes are listed in Appendix table A4.

Other theft offences recorded by the police

This offence group makes up more than a quarter of all crime recorded by the police. The most recent data for other theft offences as recorded by the police showed a 2 per cent decrease compared with the previous year (Table 16b), with a fall evident in the majority of force areas. This follows a rise in the recent past, for example of 5 per cent between the year ending March 2010 and the year ending June 2011. However, this should be seen in the context that the latest estimate is still 9 per cent down from five years ago (Figure 9).

Figure 9 Trends in police recorded other theft offences, 2002/03 to year ending June 2012

Figure 9 Trends in police recorded other theft offences, 2002/03 to year ending June 2012
Source: Home Office

Notes:

  1. The data on this chart refer to different time periods: a) 2002/03 to 2009/10 refers to the financial year (April to March). b) The last two data points refer to the rolling 12 month time period for the past two years (July to June).

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The main sub-categories of this offence group are discussed in the relevant sections below.

Theft from the person

Theft from the person (e.g. pick-pocketing) is a relatively low volume offence type which is subject to notable fluctuations from year to year in the CSEW. The majority of these thefts are made up of stealth thefts where at the time of the offence the individuals were unaware that the items they were carrying were being stolen.

The CSEW showed no statistically significant change in theft from the person based on interviews in the year ending June 2012 compared with the previous year (the apparent 3 per cent increase was not statistically significant) (Tables 15a and 15b). However, the last two years (Figure 10) have seen non-statistically significant increases which might represent an emerging upward trend. However, it is too early to draw firm conclusions at this stage as longer term comparisons suggest a relatively flat trend.

The police recorded crime category theft from the person is also relatively low in volume, similar to the CSEW, and accounts for 3 per cent of overall police recorded crime. Latest police recorded crime figures for this offence shows a 6 per cent increase in the year ending June 2012 compared with the previous year (Tables 16a and 16b). This latest increase continues the upward trend seen since 2009/10. This followed large falls between 2002/03 and 2009/10. Thus, despite the recent rises, the number of theft from the person offences recorded in the year ending June 2012 was 12 per cent lower than in 2006/07 and 32 per cent lower than in 2002/03.

Figure 10 Trends in CSEW theft from the person and other household theft, 1981 to year ending June 2012

Figure 10 Trends in CSEW theft from the person and other household theft, 1981 to year ending June 2012
Source: Crime Survey for England and Wales - Office for National Statistics

Notes:

  1. The data on this chart refer to different time periods: a) 1981 to 1999 refers to the calendar year (January to December). b) 2001/02 to 2009/10 refers to the financial year (April to March). c) The last two data points refer to the rolling 12 month time period for the past two years (July to June).

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CSEW Other household theft

This offence group consists of items stolen from outside the victim’s home as well as burglaries from non-connected buildings, such as sheds, and thefts in the victim’s dwelling by someone entitled to be there, for example a workman.2 Around half of these incidents involve theft of garden furniture or household items/furniture which are taken from outside the dwelling; these thefts are generally opportunistic in nature.

Based on CSEW interviews in the year ending June 2012 it was estimated that there were just over 1.3 million incidents of other household theft (Tables 15a and 15b), making up 15 per cent of the overall CSEW crime. CSEW other household theft estimates have previously shown an apparent upward trend, the latest estimates suggest this increase could be slowing given a 1 per cent non-statistically significant increase. (Figure 10). 

Longer term comparisons show that CSEW estimates of other household theft have increased by 14 per cent since the 2006/07 survey, though this should be seen in the context of prior reductions. Thus figures from the survey year ending June 2012 for this type of theft are 40 per cent lower than in 1995.

CSEW Other theft of personal property

There were an estimated 1 million incidents of other theft of personal property in the survey year ending June 2012. These are theft offences which involve items stolen from victims while away from the home but not being carried on the person (such as theft of unattended property in pubs, restaurants, entertainment venues, workplaces etc). Estimates have fluctuated in recent years and the apparent 4 per cent decrease compared with the previous survey year was not statistically significant. Looking at the longer term trend, theft of other personal property saw marked declines from the mid-1990s and levels have halved compared with the 1995 CSEW (Appendix table A1).

Bicycle theft

The apparent 8 per cent decrease of CSEW bicycle theft incidents, based on interviews in the year ending June 2012, was not statistically significant compared with the previous year (Tables 15a and 15b). This is one of the lower volume CSEW offence groups, and can show large fluctuations from year to year. The longer term trend in CSEW bicycle theft gives some indication of increases over the last ten years, though variability in estimates means that a clear pattern is difficult to discern (Appendix table A1).

Bicycle thefts recorded by the police decreased by 3 per cent in the year ending June 2012 compared with the previous year (Tables 16a and 16b). It is too early to say whether this represents an emerging downward trend as the longer term trend is fairly stable, with numbers of bicycle thefts recorded by the police showing small fluctuations around the current level (108,007 offences in the year ending June 2012) for most of the last decade. It should be noted that the 10 per cent increase compared with 2002/03 shown in table 16b is a result of comparisons against relatively low volumes of bicycle thefts in that year (97,755).

Other theft or unauthorised taking offences recorded by the police

The main driver of the decrease seen in the offence group other theft is the sub-category ‘other theft or unauthorised taking’. This sub-category saw a 4 per cent decrease for the year ending June 2012 compared with the previous year (Tables 16a and 16b). This compares with an 8 per cent rise between the year ending March 2010 and the latest figures (Appendix table A4). These offences involve theft of unattended property and as figures include theft of both personal property (such as unattended wallets and phones) and property from outside people’s homes (for example garden furniture and tools), there is some overlap with CSEW categories of other personal theft and other household theft.

This police recorded crime category also includes crimes against organisations which are not covered by the CSEW, such as theft of metal or industrial equipment. It is not possible to identify these specific types of theft in centrally held police recorded crime data.

Table 15a CSEW other theft of property – number, rate and percentage of incidents

Adults aged 16 and over/households, England and Wales

  Interviews from:
Jan-95 to Dec-95 Apr-01 to Mar-02 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11 Jul-11 to Jun-121
Number of incidents Thousands      
Theft from the person 680 604 574 575 595
Other theft of personal property 2,069 1,407 1,142 1,076 1,031
Other household theft 2,223 1,429 1,171 1,315 1,335
Bicycle theft 660 364 466 500 459
Incidence rate per 1,000 adults/households          
Theft from the person 17 14 13 13 13
Other theft of personal property 51 34 26 24 23
Other household theft 107 66 52 56 56
Bicycle theft: bicycle-owning households 71 42 46 46 38
Percentage of adults/households who were victims once or more Percentage      
Theft from the person 1.6 1.3 1.2 1.2 1.2
Other theft of personal property 4.1 2.8 2.2 2.1 2.0
Unweighted base - personal crime 16,337 32,787 47,138 47,427 42,386
Other household theft 7.6 4.8 4.0 4.3 4.4
Unweighted base - household crime 16,310 32,720 47,027 47,401 42,355
Bicycle theft: bicycle-owning households 6.1 3.7 4.0 4.0 3.4
Unweighted base - bicycle owners 6,882 13,501 21,054 21,413 20,335

Table source: Office for National Statistics

Table notes:

  1. Base sizes for data year ending June 2012 are smaller than previous years, due to sample size reductions introduced in April 2012.
  2. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix tables A1, A2, A3.

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Table 15b CSEW other theft of property - percentage change and statistical significance

Adults aged 16 and over/households, England and Wales

  July 2011 to June 2012 compared with:
Jan-95 to Dec-95 Apr-01 to Mar-02 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11
Number of incidents Percentage change and significance1  
Theft from the person -13 * -1   4   3  
Other theft of personal property -50 * -27 * -10 * -4  
Other household theft -40 * -7 * 14   1  
Bicycle theft -30 * 26   -2   -8  
Incidence rate per 1,000 adults/households                
Theft from the person -21 * -9   0   3  
Other theft of personal property -55 * -32 * -13 * -5  
Other household theft -47 * -14 * 9   0  
Bicycle theft: bicycle-owning households -47 * -9   -17 * -18 *
Percentage of adults/households who were victims once or more Percentage point change and significance1,2  
Theft from the person -0.4 * -0.1   0.0   0.0  
Other theft of personal property -2.1 * -0.8 * -0.3 * -0.1  
Other household theft -3.2 * -0.4 * 0.4 * 0.1  
Bicycle theft: bicycle-owning households -2.7 * -0.3   -0.6 * -0.5 *

Table source: Office for National Statistics

Table notes:

  1. Statistically significant change at the 5% level is indicated by an asterisk.
  2. The percentage point change presented in the tables may differ from subtraction of the two percentages due to rounding.
  3. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix tables A1, A2, A3.

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Table 16a Police recorded other theft - number and rate of offences

England and Wales

  Apr-02 to Mar-03 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11 Jul-11 to Jun-12
Other theft offences2 1,336,924 1,180,802 1,090,610 1,070,983
     of which:        
       Theft from the person 148,488 114,852 95,742 101,414
       Theft of a pedal cycle 97,755 110,526 111,390 108,007
       Shoplifting 310,881 294,282 305,006 304,410
       Other theft or unauthorised taking 647,827 536,603 489,611 469,828
Other theft rate per 1,000 population 26 22 20 19

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. Police recorded crime statistics based on data from all 44 forces in England and Wales (including the British Transport Police).
  2. For full range of offences included in other theft see Appendix table A4.
  3. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix table A4.

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Table 16b Police recorded other theft - percentage change

England and Wales

percentage change
  July 2011 to June 2012 compared with:
Apr-02 to Mar-03 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11
Other theft offences1 -20 -9 -2
     of which:      
       Theft from the person -32 -12 6
       Theft of a pedal cycle 10 -2 -3
       Shoplifting -2 3 0
       Other theft or unauthorised taking -27 -12 -4

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. For full range of offences included in other theft see Appendix table A4.
  2. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix table A4.

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Notes for Other theft of property

  1. Personal theft against 10 to 15 year olds sampled by the CSEW can be found in the 10 to 15 year old section of this publication.

  2. For more details on the offences that constitute CSEW other household theft see Section 5.2 and Appendix 2 of the User Guide.

Vandalism and criminal damage

Based on CSEW interviews in the year ending June 2012 there were 1.9 million incidents of vandalism of personal and household property, a statistically significant decrease of 10 per cent from the previous year (Tables 17a and 17b). Figure 11 shows the CSEW long-term trend for vandalism which shows a different pattern compared with most other CSEW categories.

Vandalism offences peaked in 1993 at 3.4 million followed by a fall until the 2003/04 survey (2.4 million). This was followed by a short period of increases until the 2006/07 CSEW, after which the number of incidents fell to 1.9 million in the latest survey. Offences of damage to personal property experienced by 10 to 15 year olds can be found in the Crime experienced by children aged 10-15 section of this publication.

Tables 17a and 17b show the recent downward trend in this offence group, with statistically significant decreases compared with both 2006/07 and 2001/02. This downward trend in incidents is also reflected in the percentage of households victimised, 5 in 100 households were victims of vandalism in the year ending June 2012 compared with 10 in 100 households in 1995.

Figure 11 Trends in CSEW vandalism, 1981 to year ending June 2012

Figure 11 Trends in CSEW vandalism, 1981 to year ending June 2012
Source: Crime Survey for England and Wales - Office for National Statistics

Notes:

  1. The data on this chart refer to different time periods: a) 1981 to 1999 refers to the calendar year (January to December). b) 2001/02 to 2009/10 refers to the financial year (April to March). c) The last two data points refer to the rolling 12 month time period for the past two years (July to June).

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Police recorded crime also shows reductions in the similar offence group of criminal damage.  In the year ending June 2012 there were 598,958 offences recorded, a fall of 12 per cent from the previous year (Tables 18a and 18b). Reductions were seen within all types of criminal damage recorded by the police (Appendix table A4). Criminal damage offences have seen a marked fall since 2007/08 whereas previously the pattern had been fairly flat since 2002/03.

Table 17a CSEW vandalism - number and percentage of incidents

Households, England and Wales

  Interviews from:
Jan-95 to Dec-95 Apr-01 to Mar-02 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11 Jul-11 to Jun-121
  Thousands      
Number of vandalism incidents 3,300 2,575 2,896 2,123 1,916
Vandalism incidence rate per 1,000 households 159 118 128 90 81
  Percentage      
Percentage of households that were victims of vandalism once or more 10.1 7.3 7.9 6.1 5.5
Unweighted base - household crime 16,310 32,370 47,027 47,401 42,355

Table source: Office for National Statistics

Table notes:

  1. Base sizes for data year ending June 2012 are smaller than previous years, due to sample size reductions introduced in April 2012.
  2. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix tables A1, A2, A3.

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Table 17b CSEW vandalism - percentage change and statistical significance

Households, England and Wales

    July 2011 to June 2012 compared with:
Jan-95 to Dec-95 Apr-01 to Mar-02 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11
Percentage change and significance1  
Number of vandalism incidents -42 * -26 * -34 * -10 *
Vandalism incidence rate per 1,000 households -49 * -32 * -37 * -11 *
  Percentage point change and significance1,2  
Percentage of households that were victims of vandalism once or more -4.6 * -1.8 * -2.4 * -0.6 *

Table source: Office for National Statistics

Table notes:

  1. Statistically significant change at the 5% level is indicated by an asterisk.
  2. The percentage point change presented in the tables may differ from subtraction of the two percentages due to rounding.
  3. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix tables A1, A2, A3.

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Table 18a Police recorded criminal damage offences - number and rate of offences

England and Wales

  Apr-02 to Mar-03 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11 Jul-11 to Jun-12
Criminal damage offences 1,120,610 1,185,040 677,253 598,958
Criminal damage rate per 1,000 population 22 22 12 11

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. Police recorded crime statistics based on data from all 44 forces in England and Wales (including the British Transport Police).
  2. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix table A4.

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Table 18b Police recorded criminal damage offences - percentage change

England and Wales

percentage change
  July 2011 to June 2012 compared with:
Apr-02 to Mar-03 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11
Criminal damage offences -47 -49 -12

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix table A4.

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Other police recorded offences

Other police recorded offences comprise: drug offences and the offence group ‘other miscellaneous’. Table 19a shows the number of offences and rates per 1,000 population for these offences and table 19b shows the percentage change over time.

Table 19a Police recorded other offences - numbers and rates of offences

England and Wales

  Apr-02 to Mar-03 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11 Jul-11 to Jun-12
Drug offences 143,320 194,233 232,864 222,520
Other miscellaneous offences 64,011 75,739 64,791 58,349
Drug offences rate per 1,000 population 3 4 4 4
Other miscellaneous offences rate per 1,000 population 1 1 1 1

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. Police recorded crime statistics based on data from all 44 forces in England and Wales (including the British Transport Police).
  2. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix table A4.

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Table 19b Police recorded other offences - percentage change

England and Wales

percentage change
  July 2011 to June 2012 compared with:
Apr-02 to Mar-03 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Jul-10 to Jun-11
Drug offences 55 15 -4
Other miscellaneous offences -9 -23 -10

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. For detailed footnotes and further years see Appendix table A4.

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Police recorded 222,520 drug offences in the year ending June 2012, a decrease of 4 per cent compared with the previous year. Drug offences peaked in 2008/09 at 243,536 offences (Appendix table A4). The number of drug offences has increased by 55 per cent from 2002/03 and by 15 per cent from 2006/07.

The number of drug offences recorded by the police is heavily dependent on police activities and priorities. As a result changes over time may reflect changes in the policing of drug crime rather than real changes in its incidence. In recent years the police were given powers:

  • To issue warnings on the street (rather than at a police station) for possession of cannabis offences (April 2004).

  • To issue penalty notices for disorder for possession of cannabis (January 2009).

In 2011/12 as in 2010/11, possession of cannabis offences accounted for around 70 per cent of all police recorded drug offences.

The ‘other miscellaneous offences’ category constituted less than 2 per cent of all recorded crime in the year ending June 2012, and contains a variety of offences from those against the state to perverting the course of justice, and going equipped for stealing. The latest figures show a reduction of 10 per cent compared with the previous year (Table 19b).

Fraud

The extent of fraud is difficult to measure because it is a deceptive crime, often targeted at organisations rather than individuals. Victims of fraud may be unaware they have been a victim of crime, or may be unaware that any fraudulent activity has occurred. As such, many incidents of fraud may not be reported to the police or recalled by CSEW respondents. Fraud is also inherently different from other crimes in that one fraud offence can potentially affect thousands of victims. It may also be difficult to ascertain where the offence originated or took place (e.g. via cyberspace).

The National Statistician’s Review of Crime Statistics for England and Wales in June 2011 identified fraud as one of the more important gaps in crime statistics and recommended that data from additional sources should be provided alongside existing available data. This section draws on a range of sources including police recorded crime, the CSEW and the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB). Together these help to provide a fuller picture. For more information on the different sources of fraud data, see section 5.4 of the User Guide.

‘Action Fraud’ is the public face of the NFIB and acts as a national reporting centre that records incidents of fraud directly from the public and organisations. It was created to provide support and fraud prevention advice to victims and to enable a co-ordinated approach to analysing and tackling fraud. By April 2013 it will take over full responsibility from the police for recording all fraud offences. Some forgery offences will continue to be recorded by the police. During 2011/12, five police forces began feeding selected fraud offences to Action Fraud, and all forces in England and Wales will be doing so by March 2013.

Changes to the way in which police record crimes of fraud and forgery following the introduction of the Fraud Act 2006 mean that year on year comparisons are only possible from 2007/08 onwards. Changes should be taken in context of the known under-reporting of fraud to the police, the transfer of responsibility for recording fraud offences from five police forces to Action Fraud and the expected continuing decline as more forces do so. See section 5.4 of the User Guide for more details on police recorded fraud and forgery. 

In the year ending June 2012, the police recorded 139,519 fraud and forgery offences, a decrease of 3 per cent compared with the 144,008 offences recorded in the year ending June 2011 (Table 20). Since peaking in 2008/09, the number of police recorded fraud and forgery offences have decreased each year within this comparable period. This trend has continued in the years ending June 2011 and June 2012, although, as explained above, it is likely that this does not reflect the real trend in this type of offence.

Table 20a Police recorded fraud and forgery<1> – number and rate of offences

England and Wales

  Apr-07 to Mar-08 Apr-08 to Mar-09 Apr-09  to Mar-10 Jul-10 to Jun-11 Jul-11 to Jun-12
Fraud and forgery offences 155,439 163,159 152,272 144,008 139,519
Fraud and forgery rate per 1,000 population 3 3 3 3 3

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. Police recorded crime statistics based on all data from all 44 forces in England and Wales (including the British Transport Police). Between April 2011 and June 2012, five police forces had transferred responsibility for recording selected fraud offences to Action Fraud.

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Table 20b Police recorded fraud and forgery<1> – percentage change

England and Wales

percentage change
  July 2011 to June 2012 compared with:
  Apr-07 to Mar-08 Jul-10 to Jun-11
Total fraud and forgery offences   -10 -3

Table source: Home Office

Table notes:

  1. Police recorded crime statistics based on all data from all 44 forces in England and Wales (including the British Transport Police). Between April 2011 and June 2012, five police forces had transferred responsibility for recording selected fraud offences to Action Fraud.

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The NFIB collates and analyses data from three sources: Action Fraud, CIFAS (a UK-wide fraud prevention service) and the UK Cards Association (the trade association for the card payments industry in the UK) and will be sourcing data from additional financial and fraud prevention institutions in the future. These data are not National Statistics and are subject to ongoing development before they should be seen as providing an authoritative measure of fraud. In the future, these data will be higher in volume as all police forces in England and Wales record relevant fraud offences via Action Fraud.

The NFIB reported 426,386 offences of fraud in the UK in the year ending June 2012 (Table 21 and Appendix table A5 for a full breakdown of NFIB fraud offences by type). As some NFIB data sources are UK-wide it is not possible to report these data for England and Wales only due to the difficulty in determining where a fraud offence occurred. Figures here include incidents where the victim was based in the UK. 

Table 21 Fraud offences, National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (non-National Statistics), year ending June 2012

United Kingdom

Numbers
Banking and payment related fraud                  329,230
Telecommunications industry fraud                     28,421
Purchase fraud                     29,302
Advance fee fraud                     24,468
Insurance related fraud                       8,621
Investment fraud                       3,539
Computer misuse                       1,982
Consumer phone fraud                          239
Corporate employee fraud                          221
Charities and grants                          189
Business trading fraud                          148
Corporate procurement fraud                             26
   
Total                  426,386

Table notes:

  1. Source: National Fraud Intelligence Bureau
  2. For an explanation and examples of the fraud offences within each category see appendix table A5 and section 5.4 of the User Guide.
  3. There was a small error in the NFIB recording system during the first quarter of 2012 whereby some offences within purchase fraud were incorrectly recorded as advance fee frauds. Offences have been reassigned to the correct fraud type, although figures remain subject to further revision once NFIB records have been updated.

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Over three quarters of the fraud offences recorded by the NFIB are banking and payment related and involve cheque, plastic card and online bank accounts. This proportion may change as more police forces pass responsibility for recording fraud offences to Action Fraud. Some fraud categories are currently supplied with data from Action Fraud only, for example computer misuse (hacking, viruses) and advance fee fraud (where a victim is encouraged to make a payment for something that never materialises).

These categories are more likely to show increases than those that are already populated by industry sources such as banking and payment related fraud by the UK Cards Association and telecommunications industry fraud by CIFAS. For more information on the types of offences within each of the NFIB categories see section 5.4 of the User Guide and Appendix table A5.

Elements of banking and payment related fraud are the focus of a module of questions in the CSEW, which asks respondents about their experience of plastic card fraud. The year ending June 2012 CSEW showed that 4.7 per cent of plastic card owners were victims of card fraud in the last year, down from the 5.1 per cent in the year ending June 2011 and returning to the level measured in 2007/08 (Figure 12).

Despite this fall, this level of victimisation remains significantly higher than more established acquisitive offences such as theft from the person and other theft of personal property (1.2 per cent and 2.0 per cent respectively, Table 15a other theft of property).

Figure 12 Proportion of plastic card users who had been a victim of plastic card fraud in the last year, 2005/06 to year ending June 2012 CSEW

Figure 12 Proportion of plastic card users who had been a victim of plastic card fraud in the last year, 2005/06 to year ending June 2012 CSEW
Source: Office for National Statistics

Notes:

  1. Data for 2006/07 are not shown as the module of questions on plastic card fraud was not included in the 2006/07 CSEW.
  2. The data on this chart refer to different time periods. 2005/06 to 2009/10 refers to the financial year (April to March). The last two data points refer to the rolling 12 month time period for the last two years (July to June).

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The CSEW pattern of recent falls in plastic card owners experiencing card fraud returning to similar levels to those measured in 2007/08 is consistent with trends reported by the UK Cards Association. They reported plastic card fraud losses of £341 million for UK-issued cards in 2011. Despite increases in plastic card usage and the number of transactions taking place, this was a decrease of 7 per cent from the £365 million reported for 2010, and a decrease of 44 per cent from a peak of £610 million recorded in 20081.

The industry suggests that a combination of the use of fraud screening detection tools by retailers, banks and the cards industry, the introduction of chip and pin technology, enhanced user and industry awareness and improved prevention and detection initiatives have led to the decrease in plastic card fraud. More detailed information including a breakdown of plastic card fraud by type in the UK and abroad, is available from the UK Cards Association.

Notes for Fraud

  1. The UK Cards Association collates data on credit card, debit card and online banking fraud.  The NFIB dataset contains UK Cards Association incidents of confirmed fraud with losses only.

Crime experienced by children aged 10-15

Since January 2009, the CSEW has asked children aged 10 to 15 resident in households in England and Wales about their experience of crime in the previous 12 months. Preliminary results from the first calendar year were published in 2010 (Millard and Flatley) and following a user consultation these statistics were refined further. The results for 2010/11 were published in two reports (Chaplin et al and Smith et al).

The questionnaire was refined again for the 2011/12 survey. The changes to the questions and definitions used should be borne in mind when interpreting the figures and hence no statistical assessment of change in levels of victimisation between the years is presented (see Further Information Section for more details). Methodological differences also mean that direct comparisons cannot be made between the adult and child data (Millard and Flatley).

Figures are shown from the latest three financial years and the year ending June 2012. Two approaches to measuring crime are used. The ‘Preferred measure’ takes into account factors identified as important in determining the severity of an incident (such as relationship to the offender and level of injury or value of item stolen or damaged). In addition to offences included in the preferred method, the ‘Broad measure’ also includes minor offences between children and family members that would not normally be treated as criminal matters. Results commented on in this section refer only to the preferred measure of crime, although the tables show both figures for completeness. More details about these two measures can be found in the Further Information Section.

Overall level of crime

Based on CSEW interviews in the year ending June 2012, there were an estimated 877,000 crimes experienced by children aged 10 to 15 using the preferred measure; of this number just over one-half were violent crimes (481,000) while most of the remaining crimes were thefts of personal property (357,000). Incidents of vandalism to personal property experienced by children were less common (39,000 crimes).

Fourteen per cent of children aged 10 to 15 had been a victim of any crime covered by the CSEW in the past 12 months, 7 per cent had been a victim of a violent crime and 7 per cent had been a victim of personal theft (Tables 22 to 24).

Table 22 CSEW offences experienced by children aged 10 to 15

Children aged 10 to 15, England and Wales

    Preferred measure1 Broad measure1
    Apr-09 to Mar-10 Apr-10 to Mar-11 Apr-11 to Mar 12 Jul-11 to Jun-122 Apr-09 to Mar-10 Apr-10 to Mar-11 Apr-11 to Mar 12 Jul-11 to Jun-122
    Thousands:              
Number of incidents 1,030 893 1,023 877 2,071 1,507 1,513 1,278
    Percentage:              
Percentage who were victims once or more 14.6 11.7 15.0 13.7 24.5 17.3 20.1 18.0
Unweighted base 3,762 3,849 3,930 3,597 3,762 3,849 3,930 3,597

Table source: Office for National Statistics

Table notes:

  1. The ‘Preferred measure’ takes into account factors identified as important in determining the severity of an incidence (such as level of injury, value of item stolen or damaged, relationship with the perpetrator) while the ‘Broad measure’ counts all incidents which would be legally defined as crimes and therefore may include low-level incidents between children. For more details see Further Information Section.
  2. Bases sizes for data year ending June 2012 are smaller than previous years, due to sample size reductions introduced in April 2012.
  3. Some estimates are based on a small number of children hence caution should be applied; see User Guide tables UG6 and UG8 for the margin of error around these estimates.

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Violent offences

The CSEW estimates that there were 481,000 violent offences against children aged 10 to 15 in the year ending June 2012. The majority (65 per cent) of these violent incidents resulted in injury to the victim (the majority being minor bruising or black eyes). In comparison, about 50 per cent of violent incidents among adults aged 16 or over resulted in injury to the victim (Table 5a).

Seven per cent of children aged 10 to 15 had experienced violent crime in the last year; 4 per cent had experienced violence with injury (Table 5b).

One per cent of children aged 10 to 15 were victims of robbery in the last year.

Table 23 CSEW violent offences experienced by children aged 10 to 15

Children aged 10 to 15, England and Wales

    Preferred measure1   Broad measure1
    Apr-09 to Mar-10 Apr-10 to Mar-11 Apr-11 to Mar 12 Jul-11 to Jun-122   Apr-09 to Mar-10 Apr-10 to Mar-11 Apr-11 to Mar 12 Jul-11 to Jun-122
    Number of incidents (thousands)            
Violence 630 586 566 481   1,508 1,088 979 825
                     
  Wounding 128 87 55 43   130 87 55 43
  Assault with minor injury 265 328 297 234   357 399 369 290
  Assault without injury 164 115 132 128   316 195 472 412
  Robbery 74 56 82 76   80 64 83 80
  Aggressive behaviour (unspecified)3 .. .. .. ..   607 341 .. ..
  Theft with threat (unspecified)3 .. .. .. ..   18 3 .. ..
  Violence with injury 412 449 388 313   509 521 460 370
  Violence without injury (includes specified and unspecified)3,4,5 217 137 178 168   999 567 519 456
    Percentage who were victims once or more            
Violence 8.5 6.9 7.6 6.9   18.1 12.1 12.9 11.6
  Wounding 1.9 1.1 0.9 0.8   1.9 1.1 0.9 0.8
  Assault with minor injury 3.7 3.7 3.6 3.1   5.1 4.5 4.5 3.7
  Assault without injury 2.4 1.7 2.1 2.0   4.2 3.0 7.1 6.5
  Robbery 1.3 0.9 1.3 1.3   1.4 1.0 1.3 1.3
  Aggressive behaviour (unspecified)3 .. .. .. ..   7.5 4.5 .. ..
  Theft with threat (unspecified)3 .. .. .. ..   0.2 0.1 .. ..
  Violence with injury 5.5 5.1 4.8 4.2   6.8 5.8 5.7 4.9
  Violence without injury (includes specified and unspecified)3,4,5 3.4 2.1 3.1 2.9   12.4 7.4 8.0 7.4
Unweighted base 3,762 3,849 3,930 3,597   3,762 3,849 3,930 3,597

Table source: Office for National Statistics

Table notes:

  1. The ‘Preferred measure’ takes into account factors identified as important in determining the severity of an incidence (such as level of injury, value of item stolen or damaged, relationship with the perpetrator) while the ‘Broad measure’ counts all incidents which would be legally defined as crimes and therefore may include low-level incidents between children. For more details see Further Information Section.
  2. Bases sizes for data year ending June 2012 are smaller than previous years, due to sample size reductions introduced in April 2012.
  3. These offences are designated as 'unspecified' since only limited information was collected about these low-level offences in 2009/10 and 2010/11  (see Appendix 1 for more details).
  4. For the years 2009/10 and 2010/11 'Violence without injury' includes unspecified crimes.
  5. Violence with injury includes wounding, assault with minor injury and robbery where injury was sustained. Violence without injury includes assault without injury and robbery with no injury plus, for the ‘Broad measure’, the unspecified offences of aggressive behaviour and theft with threat or force (these involve no injury otherwise further information would have been collected during the interview).
  6. Some estimates are based on a small number of children hence caution should be applied; see User Guide tables UG6 and UG8 for the margin of error around these estimates.

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Property offences

There were an estimated 357,000 incidents of theft and 39,000 incidents of damage of personal property experienced by children aged 10 to 15 according to the year ending June 2012 CSEW. Three-fifths of the thefts were other theft of personal property (221,000 incidents) which includes thefts of property left unattended while the child was away from the home.

Seven per cent of children aged 10 to 15 had experienced an incident of personal theft in the last year with ‘other theft of personal property’ most commonly experienced (4 per cent). Theft from the person (for example, pick-pocketing) was much less common, with just 1 per cent of children reporting being victimised. A similar percentage of children had experienced vandalism of personal property.

Table 24 CSEW property offences experienced by children aged 10 to 15

Children aged 10 to 15, England and Wales

    Preferred measure1   Broad measure1
    Apr-09 to Mar-10 Apr-10 to Mar-11 Apr-11 to Mar 12 Jul-11 to Jun-122   Apr-09 to Mar-10 Apr-10 to Mar-11 Apr-11 to Mar 12 Jul-11 to Jun-122
    Number of incidents (thousands)            
Personal theft 353 280 419 357   426 334 487 410
  Theft from the person 59 34 51 52   61 37 53 53
  Snatch theft 21 19 25 20   22 22 25 20
  Stealth theft 38 15 26 31   38 15 28 33
  Other theft of personal property 203 165 253 221   250 190 320 273
  Theft of personal property (unspecifed)3 .. .. .. ..   21 19 .. ..
  Theft from the dwelling/outside the dwelling4 20 25 39 29   23 31 39 29
  Bike theft4 71 56 75 55   71 56 75 55
Vandalism to personal property4 48 27 39 39   137 85 47 42
  Damage to personal property4 48 27 39 39   59 27 47 42
  Damage to personal property (unspecified)4 .. .. .. ..   78 57 .. ..
    Percentage who were victims once or more            
Personal theft 7.4 5.4 8.0 7.5   8.5 6.3 9.0 8.1
  Theft from the person 0.9 0.7 1.2 1.2   0.9 0.7 1.2 1.2
  Snatch theft 0.3 0.3 0.6 0.5   0.3 0.4 0.6 0.5
  Stealth theft 0.6 0.3 0.6 0.7   0.6 0.3 0.7 0.8
  Other theft of personal property 4.4 3.1 4.9 4.5   5.0 3.5 5.8 5.1
  Theft of personal property (unspecifed)3 .. .. .. ..   0.5 0.4 .. ..
  Theft from the dwelling/outside the dwelling4 0.5 0.5 0.8 0.7   0.5 0.6 0.8 0.7
  Bike theft4 1.6 1.2 1.5 1.4   1.6 1.2 1.5 1.4
Vandalism to personal property4 0.7 0.4 0.8 0.9   2.2 1.5 1.0 0.9
  Damage to personal property4 0.7 0.4 0.8 0.9   1.0 0.4 1.0 0.9
  Damage to personal property (unspecified)3 .. .. .. ..   1.3 1.1 .. ..
Unweighted base 3,762 3,849 3,930 3,597   3,762 3,849 3,930 3,597

Table source: Office for National Statistics

Table notes:

  1. The ‘Preferred measure’ takes into account factors identified as important in determining the severity of an incidence (such as level of injury, value of item stolen or damaged, relationship with the perpetrator) while the ‘Broad measure’ counts all incidents which would be legally defined as crimes and therefore may include low-level incidents between children. For more details see Further Information Section.
  2. Bases sizes for data year ending June 2012 are smaller than previous years, due to sample size reductions introduced in April 2012.
  3. These offences are designated as 'unspecified' since only limited information was collected about these low-level offences in 2009/10 and 2010/11  (see Appendix 1 for more details).
  4. These offences are designated as 'household' offences for adults on the CSEW (respondents reply on behalf of the household) but are presented here as 'personal' offences when the property stolen or damaged solely belonged to the child respondent. This broadens the scope of personal victimisation but may also result in double-counting of offences on the adult survey; the extent to which this happens will be evaluated in the future.
  5. Some estimates are based on a small number of children hence caution should be applied; see User Guide tables UG6 and UG8 for the margin of error around these estimates.

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Anti-social behaviour

Incidents recorded by the police

Figures relating to anti-social behaviour can be considered alongside police recorded (notifiable) crime to provide a more comprehensive view of the crime and disorder that comes to the attention of the police.

The police record anti-social behaviour (ASB) incidents in accordance with the National Standard for Incident Recording (NSIR); for further details, see Chapter 5 of the User Guide. While incidents are recorded under NSIR in accordance with the same ‘victim focused’ approach that applies for recorded crime, these figures are not accredited National Statistics and are not subject to the same level of quality assurance as the main recorded crime collection.

In particular, Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) reviews 1 found that there is greater variation in the recording of anti-social incidents across police forces than in recording notifiable offences. It is also known that a small number of police forces are erroneously duplicating some occurrences of a singular ASB incident where multiple calls have been made; consideration is being taken as to how to remedy this situation for future releases. Thus the figures stated below are likely to be revised downwards once final validated figures have been supplied by forces.

Further, data on ASB incidents from 2011/12 are not directly comparable with those in previous periods, owing to a change in the classification used for ASB incidents. Figures for the period 2007/08 to 2010/11 show declines in the number of ASB incidents recorded by the police consistent with recent trends in total police recorded crime.

The police recorded 2.5 million incidents of ASB in the year ending June 2012. This compares to the 3.9 million notifiable crimes recorded by the police over the same period (Figure 13).

Figure 13 Police recorded crime and anti-social behaviour incidents, 2007/08 to year ending June 2012

Figure 13 Police recorded crime and anti-social behaviour incidents, 2007/08 to year ending June 2012
Source: Home Office

Notes:

  1. ASB figures are not accredited National Statistics
  2. ASB incidents exclude British Transport Police.

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From 2011/12, a new set of three simplified categories for ASB was introduced (for further details, see Chapter 5 of the User Guide):

  • ‘Nuisance’ – captures incidents where an act, condition, thing or person causes trouble, annoyance, irritation, inconvenience, offence or suffering to the local community in general rather than to individual victims.

  • ‘Personal’ – captures incidents that are perceived as either deliberately targeted at an individual or group, or having an impact on an individual or group rather than the community at large.

  • Environmental – captures incidents where individuals and groups have an impact on their surroundings, including natural, built and social environments.

In the year ending June 2012, of ASB incidents categorised by the police, 64 per cent were identified as ‘Nuisance’; 28 per cent as ‘Personal’; and 7 per cent as ‘Environmental’ (Figure 14).

Figure 14 Categories of anti-social behaviour incidents, year ending June 2012 (non-National Statistics)

Figure 14 Categories of anti-social behaviour incidents, year ending June 2012 (non-National Statistics)
Source: Home Office

Notes:

  1. ASB figures are not accredited National Statistics.
  2. Some police forces were unable to categorise all incidents of ASB; incidents include Nottinghamshire for January - June 2012 only and London, City of / Metropolitan Police for October 2011 - June 2012 only.
  3. ASB incidents include British Transport Police for April - June 2012 only.
  4. Percentages may not add to 100 per cent due to rounding.

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CSEW measures of anti-social behaviour

The CSEW has long-standing questions asking respondents about perceptions of problems with different types of ASB in their local area. Seven of these questions are used to provide an overall index of perceived ASB.

In the year ending June 2012 CSEW, 15 per cent of respondents perceived there to be a high level of ASB in their local area, a non-statistically significant difference from 14 per cent in the year ending June 2011 (Table 25).

The proportion of adults perceiving problems with rubbish or litter lying around increased from 28 per cent in the year ending June 2011 to 29 per cent in the year ending June 2012. Similar increases were also recorded in relation to people using or dealing drugs (from 26 per cent to 27 per cent) and noisy neighbours or loud parties (from 11 per cent to 12 per cent); all other strands showed no statistically significant change from the previous year.

Longer term trends indicate a prevailing decrease in the perceived level of ASB, with the exceptions of noisy neighbours and drunk or rowdy behaviour which remain relatively flat. Since 2006/07 the CSEW has consistently estimated around a quarter of adults perceive people being drunk or rowdy as a problem in the local area  while around 1 in 10 in adults regard noisy neighbours or loud parties as problematic.

The most pronounced decline has been for the abandoned or burnt-out cars strand, which peaked at 25 per cent in 2002/03 and has subsequently fallen each year down to 4 per cent in 2010/11 and in 2011/12. Reductions in this indicator have driven the overall reduction in the composite measure over time (Table 25).

Table 25 CSEW trends in the anti-social behaviour indicators, 2002/03 to year ending June 2012

Adults aged 16 and over, England and Wales

  2002/03 2004/05 2006/07 2008/09 2010/11 2011/12 Jul10 - Jun11 Jul11 - Jun12 Statistically significant change, Jul10 - Jun11 to Jul11 - Jun12
  Percentages Percentages  
High level of perceived anti-social behaviour 21 17 18 17 14 15 14 15  
                   
Rubbish or litter lying around 33 30 31 30 28 30 28 29 *
People using or dealing drugs 32 26 28 27 26 27 26 27 *
Teenagers hanging around on the streets 33 31 33 30 25 25 25 24  
People being drunk or rowdy in public places 23 22 26 26 24 24 24 24  
Vandalism, graffiti and other deliberate damage to property 35 28 28 27 21 21 21 21  
Noisy neighbours or loud parties 10 9 11 10 11 12 11 12 *
Abandoned or burnt-out cars 25 12 9 6 4 4 4 4  
                   
Unweighted base1, 2 34,622 42,892 45,063 44,010 44,551 21,877 39,495 18,212  

Table source: Office for National Statistics

Table notes:

  1. Unweighted bases refer to the question relating to people using or dealing drugs. Other bases will be similar.
  2. From April 2011 the number of respondents asked questions about their perceptions of problems in the local area was reduced (from a full sample to a half sample).

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New questions about respondents’ actual experiences of ASB in their local area were added to the 2011/12 CSEW questionnaire. These questions ask whether the respondent has personally experienced or witnessed ASB in their local area, and if so, what types.

Thirty per cent of respondents in the year to June 2012 CSEW indicated that they had personally experienced or witnessed one of the ASB problems asked about in their local area in the previous year (Table 26).

The two most common types of anti-social behaviour experienced or witnessed are drink related behaviour and groups hanging around on the streets in their local area (both 11 per cent).

These figures might appear to suggest a disparity between perceptions of ASB and actual experience of such incidents, with around twice as many people experiencing or witnessing ASB compared with those who felt there was a high level of ASB in their local area. However, it is difficult to compare the two measures since the list of ASB categories used in the experience-based questions on ASB is more expansive than those asked of respondents in relation to their perceptions. In addition, it is likely someone can experience an ASB incident without necessarily believing that it is part of a problem in their local area, if, for example, it was a one-off or isolated occurrence.

Table 26 CSEW experiences of anti-social behaviour, year ending June 2012

Adults aged 16 and over, England and Wales

percentages
Personally experienced/witnessed anti-social behaviour in local area 30
   
Types of anti-social behaviour experienced/witnessed:1  
   
Drink related behaviour 11
Groups hanging around on the streets 11
Inconsiderate behaviour2 7
Loud music or other noise 6
Vandalism, criminal damage or graffiti 5
People being intimidated, verbally abused or harassed 4
Litter, rubbish or dog-fouling 4
People using or dealing drugs 3
Vehicle related behaviour3 3
Nuisance neighbours 3
Begging, vagrancy or homeless people 1
Out of control or dangerous dogs 1
People committing inappropriate or indecent sexual acts in public 0
   
Other anti-social behaviour 1
   
Unweighted base 42,342

Table source: Office for National Statistics

Table notes:

  1. Respondents can experience more than one type of anti-social behaviour, so percentages will not sum to the total that experienced/witnessed anti-social behaviour in their local area.

  2. Includes repeated/inappropriate use of fireworks; youths kicking/throwing balls in inappropriate areas; cycling/skateboarding in pedestrian areas or obstructing pavements; people throwing stones/bottles/eggs, etc.
  3. Includes inconvenient/illegal parking; abandoned vehicles; speeding cars/motorcycles; car revving; joyriding, etc.

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Notes for Anti-social behaviour

  1. Further details on the recording of ASB incidents is also available in the HMIC report ‘A step in the right direction: The policing of anti-social behaviour’.

Other non-notifiable crimes

The police recorded crime series is restricted to offences which are, or can be tried, at a Crown Court.1 A range of non-notifiable offences may be dealt with by the police issuing an out of court disposal or by prosecution at a magistrates’ court. These can include offences that may have been identified by other agencies – for example, prosecutions by TV Licensing or by the DVLA for vehicle registration offences.

Data on these offences provide counts of offences where action has been brought against an offender and guilt has either been ascertained in court, or the offender has admitted culpability through acceptance of a penalty notice. These offences generally only come to light through the relevant authorities actively looking to identify offending behaviour. These figures help fill a gap in the coverage of the main CSEW and recorded crime statistics.

Key findings from the available sources include the following:

  • Cases brought to magistrates’ courts in the year ending March 20122 resulted in 1.1 million convicted non-notifiable offences, down 7 per cent from the year ending March 2011 and continuing the downward trend since 2002.

  • 45,000 Penalty Notices for Disorder were issued for non-notifiable offences in the year ending March 2012 (Table 27a), around four in five of these were for being drunk and disorderly.

Table 27a Number of non-notifiable crimes dealt with by the courts/Penalty Notices for Disorder

England and Wales

  Apr-01 to Mar-02 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Apr-10 to Mar-11 Apr-11 to Mar-12
         
Non-notifiable convictions (thousands)3 1,538 1,466 1,135 1,052
Incidence rate (per 1,000 population) 1,2 29.1 27.4 20.7 19.1
         
Non-notifiable Penalty Notices for Disorder (thousands) 4,5,6 n/a 62 48 45
Incidence rate (per 1,000 population) 1,2   1.2 0.9 0.8

Table source: Justice

Table notes:

  1. The year to March 2012 incidence rate is calculated using ONS mid-2010 population estimates. Other figures are also calculated using the mid-year population estimate from the previous year.
  2. Numbers will be affected by the size of the resident population relative to the transient or visiting populations and may therefore over-represent the number of crimes relative to the real population of potential offenders.
  3. Figures for non-notifiable convictions apply to offenders aged 10 and over.
  4. Penalty Notices for Disorder, both higher and lower tier offences, issued to offenders aged 16 and over.
  5. Piloted in 2002 and introduced nationally in 2004.
  6. Includes British Transport Police from 2011.

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Table 27b Percentage change in non-notifiable crime dealt with by the courts/Penalty Notices for Disorder

England and Wales

  April 2011 to March 2012 compared with:
Apr-01 to Mar-02 Apr-06 to Mar-07 Apr-10 to Mar-11
  percentage    
Non-notifiable convictions3 -32 -28 -7
Incidence rate 1,2 -34.4 -30.6 -8.0
       
Non-notifiable Penalty Notices for Disorder 4,5,6 n/a -28 -7
Incidence rate 1,2   -30.0 -8.0

Table source: Justice

Table notes:

  1. The year to March 2012 incidence rate is calculated using ONS mid-2010 population estimates. Other figures are also calculated using the mid-year population estimate from the previous year.
  2. Numbers will be affected by the size of the resident population relative to the transient or visiting populations and may therefore over-represent the number of crimes relative to the real population of potential offenders.
  3. Figures for non-notifiable convictions apply to offenders aged 10 and over.
  4. Penalty Notices for Disorder, both higher and lower tier offences, issued to offenders aged 16 and over.
  5. Piloted in 2002 and introduced nationally in 2004.
  6. Includes British Transport Police from 2011.

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The police and, increasingly, local authorities have powers to issue penalty notices for a range of traffic offences and in 2010, the police issued 1.8 million Fixed Penalty Notices (just over half of which related to speeding).1

Notes for Other non-notifiable crimes

  1. The Notifiable Offence List includes all indictable and triable-either-way offences (i.e. offences which could be tried at a Crown Court) and a few additional closely related summary offences (which would be dealt with by a magistrate). For information on the classifications used for notifiable crimes recorded by the police, see Appendix 1 of the User Guide.

  2. The latest figures available from the MoJ relate to the year ending March 2012 and thus lag the CSEW and police recorded series by three months but are included to give a fuller picture. The MoJ will release figures for the year ending June 2012 in December 2012.

  3. Source: Police Powers and Procedures 2010/11 (Home Office, 2012, Table FPN.02)

Further analysis of the change in overall CSEW crime

Results published in recent quarterly releases have indicated small, non-statistically significant, changes in total CSEW crime, and described as evidence of a fairly flat trend. The latest figures show a statistically significant decrease of 6 per cent in the year ending June 2012 compared with the previous year. This raises the question as to whether or not this is evidence of an emerging downward trend.

Each quarterly publication reports on CSEW interviews taking place over the previous twelve months and thus three quarters of the underlying data used to form the estimates overlaps with the previous publication. Quarterly data tables for both the CSEW and police recorded crime are now published alongside each bulletin, and cover the previous three years data (Quarterly data tables). Although these tables are not usually commented on they are a useful tool in interpreting underlying trends.

Figure 15 is an extract from one of these tables and shows the volume of CSEW crimes estimated over the last three years by quarter of interview. The latest annual estimate published in this bulletin is the sum of the green bars that represent the four quarters that comprise the year to June 2012. The ‘comparator’ year is the sum of the red bars that make up the year to June 2011.

Figure 15 Numbers of CSEW crimes year ending June 2010 to year ending June 2012, by quarter of interview

Figure 15 Numbers of CSEW crimes year ending June 2010 to year ending June 2012, by quarter of interview
Source: Office for National Statistics

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The four quarters used in the comparator year have some distinguishing features, the most notable being the 2.58 million CSEW crimes estimated from the April to June quarter 2011, which is higher than any other quarterly figure in the last three years. The remaining three quarters used in the comparator year are less remarkable and vary between 2.33 and 2.44 million.

Two of the four quarters used in the current year to June 2012 hold the lowest number of estimated CSEW crimes from the survey in this three year period; 2.18 million in the October to December 2011 quarter and 2.16 million in the April to June quarter 2012. However the year to June 2012 also contains a single quarter with a relatively high level of CSEW crime (2.44 million).

Thus, examining the quarterly data gathered over the previous three years suggests that it is too early to tell whether the 6 per cent year on year decrease in CSEW crime is evidence of an emerging downward trend or simply reflects the effect of there being a relatively high quarter (April to June 2011) in the comparator year and a relatively low quarter (April to June 2012) in the latest year. It is advisable that caution should be used in drawing any firm conclusion until further quarters data are gathered by the survey which will either confirm or refute the emergence of a downward trend.

Data Sources - further information

This quarterly release presents the most recent crime statistics from two different sources: the Crime Survey for England and Wales (previously known as the British Crime Survey), and police recorded crime. It also draws on data from other sources to provide a more comprehensive picture. This series of first releases focuses on the latest figures and longer-term trends. For detailed information about the statistical sources used here, refer to the User Guide to Crime Statistics for England and Wales (ONS, 2012).1

Coverage of crime statistics

The CSEW and recorded crime provide generally good coverage of crime committed against the public, particularly for offences involving physical harm, loss or damage to property. Together they provide a more comprehensive picture than could be obtained from either series alone. However, neither the CSEW nor police recorded crime provide complete counts of crime and there are exclusions from both series.

The coverage of police recorded crime statistics is defined by the Notifiable Offence List2, which includes a broad range of offences, from murder to minor criminal damage, theft and public order offences. However, there are some, mainly less serious offences that are excluded from the recorded crime collection.

These ‘non-notifiable’ crimes include many incidents that might generally considered to be ‘anti-social behaviour’ but that may also be crimes in law (including bye-laws) such as littering, begging and drunkenness. Other non-notifiable offences include driving under the influence of alcohol, parking offences and TV licence evasion. These have been separately reported on in this quarterly release.

The coverage of the main count of CSEW crime is a subset of those offences included in the police recorded crime collection, but reported volumes are higher as the survey is able to capture all offences experienced by those interviewed, not just those that have been reported to the police and recorded. The first release also incorporates results from the 10 to 15 year old section of the CSEW.

The CSEW has necessary exclusions from its main count of crime (for example, homicide, crimes against businesses and other organisations and drug possession are not covered). The survey also excludes some other offences for which it may not be possible to collect robust estimates of crime levels (such as sexual offences).

The CSEW

The British Crime Survey is now known as the Crime Survey for England and Wales to better reflect its geographical coverage. While the survey did previously cover the whole of Great Britain it ceased to include Scotland in its sample in the late 1980s. There is a separate survey – the Scottish Crime and Justice Survey – covering Scotland. Given the transfer of responsibility for the survey to ONS, it was decided that the name change would take effect from 1 April 2012.

The CSEW is a face-to-face survey in which people resident in households in England and Wales are asked about their experiences of crime in the 12 months prior to the interview. For the crime types and population groups it covers, the CSEW provides a more reliable measure of trends in crime than police recorded crime statistics, as it has a consistent methodology and is unaffected by changes in levels of reporting to the police, recording practice or police activity.

Being a household survey the CSEW does not cover crime against businesses. Following a recommendation of the National Statistician’s review of crime statistics (National Statistician, 2011), a survey of commercial victimisation is now running to provide statistics on key sectors of the economy over the next three years. These results will also be incorporated into future quarterly releases in 2013.

The overall sample size for the CSEW is gradually being reduced from April 2012. The sample size will decrease from an achieved sample of 46,000 households per year in the year ending March 2012 to 35,000 households in the year ending March 2013. The sample size reduction will take 12 months to implement and readers of the quarterly bulletin will see a gradual decrease in the un-weighted bases referenced in tables as data based on the old sample of 46,000 households reduces to the new sample size of 35,000 households.

The CSEW fieldwork was carried out by TNS-BMRB. In the year ending June 2012 the CSEW had a nationally representative sample of 42,386 adults and 3,597 children. The survey is weighted to adjust for possible non-response bias and to ensure the sample reflects the profile of the general population. Being based on a sample survey, CSEW estimates are subject to a margin of error. Unless stated otherwise, all changes in CSEW estimates described in the main text are statistically significant at the 95 per cent level. For more information on statistical significance and confidence intervals for CSEW data, see Section 8 of the User Guide to Crime Statistics for England and Wales (ONS, 2012).

When interpreting results and making comparisons with police recorded crime it should be borne in mind that:

  • CSEW estimates cover the 12 months before each respondent’s interview, and therefore lag police recorded crime figures.

  • Estimates from the CSEW are subject to a degree of variation as a result of sampling.

  • Low-volume offences can frequently show apparently large year-on-year changes.

Classifying crime among 10 to 15 year olds, CSEW

Millard and Flatley (2010) proposed four potential methods for measuring crime against children. Responses to the user consultation suggested there was some value in all approaches, but the majority favoured the ‘All in law’ and ‘Norms-based’ approaches with regard to estimating levels of victimisation; these two approaches are presented within this bulletin. Of the other two methods, there was least support during the consultation for the subjective approach which included only offences perceived to be a crime by the respondent (‘Victim perceived’) and some limited interest from users in the presentation of the ‘All in law outside school’ approach.3 

The ‘All in law’ approach (now referred to as the ‘Broad measure’) is the widest-possible count of crime but will include minor offences between children and family members that would not normally be treated as criminal matters. The ‘Norms-based’ approach (now referred to as the ‘Preferred measure’) is a more focused method which takes into account factors identified as important in determining the severity of an incident but will still include incidents of a serious nature even if they took place at school.

The ‘Preferred measure’ includes all offences where:

  • The offender4 was not known (e.g. stranger, tradesman, pupil from another school).

  • The offender5 was known, but aged 16 or over and not a family member (e.g. neighbour, older friend, teacher);6.

  • The offender5 was known and either a family member or aged under 16 (e.g. parent, sibling, school-friend) and there was visible injury or theft or damage involving a ‘high value’ item7.

  • A weapon8 was involved.

In 2009/10 and 2010/11 detailed information about an incident was not collected if:

  • The incident happened at school.

  • The offender9 was a pupil at the respondent’s school.

  • The offender did not use a weapon;8.

  • The victim was not physically hurt in any way.

This was to reduce respondent burden and to reflect that some incidents reported by children may be considered relatively minor. Incidents which met these criteria had a limited amount of information collected to enable classification to a high-level crime category and so it was not possible to assign specific offence codes within the appropriate high-level classification according to standard CSEW procedures.

As a result, these cases have been designated as ‘unspecified’ offences. Without an offence code it is not possible to tell which detailed crime type the offence would be classified as. For example, data on whether the stolen item was being carried by the respondent at the time of a theft were not collected, so it is not feasible to determine whether this would be a theft from the person or other theft of personal property. However, because the respondent reported that there was intent to commit an offence, these incidents are still considered offences under law.

‘Unspecified’ offences do not fall within the scope of the ‘Preferred measure’ because the detailed information above was not collected.

In 2011/12 this was changed and full information was collected about all incidents of crime with a reduction in the number of incidents asked about to balance data collection needs with respondent burden. This means that the ‘unspecified’ categories are not shown in the table and the data are not directly comparable over the three time periods.

Police recorded crime

Police recorded crime is the primary source of sub-national crime statistics and for lower-volume crimes. It covers people (for example residents of institutions and tourists) and sectors (for example commercial crime) excluded from the CSEW sample and has a wider coverage of offences - for example covering homicide, sexual offences, and ‘crimes against the state’ (e.g. drug offences) not included in the main CSEW crime count.

Police recorded crime also provides good measures of well-reported crimes but does not cover any crimes that are not reported to or discovered by the police. It should be noted that recorded crime can be influenced by changes in recording practices or police activity. As well as the main police recorded crime series, there are additional collections covering knife crime and firearm offences, which are too low in volume to be measured reliably by the CSEW.

Police recorded crime figures have been subject to a data reconciliation process with individual forces but remain provisional as forces can revise figures during the financial year.

The National Statistics police recorded crime figures in this bulletin which cover the financial year 2011/12 have been subject to a fuller reconciliation and quality assurance process by the Home Office Statistics Unit in liaison with individual police forces.

In 2012, HMIC carried out a review of police crime and incident reports in all forces in England and Wales. This review showed that while the majority of forces performed well, there was a wide variation in the quality of recording across forces. More details can be found in section 3.2 of the User Guide.

Strengths and limitations of the Crime Survey and police recorded crime

Crime Survey for England and Wales: Strengths

  • Large nationally representative sample survey which provides a good measure of long-term trends for the crime types and the population it covers (i.e. those resident in households).

  • Consistent methodology over time.

  • Covers crimes not reported to the police and is not affected by changes in police recording practice; is therefore a better measure of long term trends.

  • Coverage of survey extended in 2009 to include children aged 10-15 resident in households.

  • Independent collection of crime figures.

Crime Survey for England and Wales: Limitations

  • Survey is subject to error associated with sampling and respondents recalling past events.

  • Excludes crimes against businesses and those not resident in households (e.g. residents of institutions and visitors).

  • Headline estimates exclude offences that are difficult to estimate robustly (such as sexual offences) or that have no victim who can be interviewed (e.g. homicides, and drug offences).

Police recorded crime: Strengths

  • Has wider offence coverage and population coverage than the CSEW.

  • Good measure of offences that are well-reported to the police.

  • Is the primary source of local crime statistics and for lower-volume crimes (e.g. homicide).

  • Provides whole counts (rather than estimates that are subject to sampling variation).

  • Time lag between occurrence of crime and reporting results tends to be short, providing an indication of emerging trends.

Police recorded crime: Limitations

  • Excludes offences that are not reported to, or not recorded by, the police and does not include less serious offences dealt with by magistrates courts (e.g. motoring offences).

  • Trends can be influenced by changes in recording practices or police activity.

  • Not possible to make long-term comparisons due to fundamental changes in recording practice introduced in 1998 and 2002/0310.

Fraud

In 2006 the Government commissioned a National Fraud Review to assess the impact and scale of fraudulent activity across the UK. This identified a need for co-ordinated recording, reporting and analysis of fraud data, and resulted in the formation of the National Fraud Authority (NFA), a National Lead Force for Fraud (City of London Police), Action Fraud and the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB).

In June 2011 the National Statistician’s Review of Crime Statistics identified fraud as one of the more important gaps in crime statistics, and recommended reporting additional sources to provide a more complete picture.

Due to fraud being a deceptive crime, which is often difficult to locate and may be targeted at organisations or many individuals at once, it is difficult to measure and no one source is able to do so completely. Fraud data from a range of sources are presented in the quarterly bulletin to provide a more complete picture. These include: police recorded crime, the NFIB, the CSEW plastic card fraud module, and the UK Cards Association.

The changes resulting from the introduction of the Fraud Act 2006 mean that police recorded fraud and forgery figures from 2007/08 onwards are not comparable with previous years. Responsibility for recording selected fraud offences is currently moving from police forces to Action Fraud, a national reporting centre that records incidents of fraud directly from the public and organisations.

It was created to provide support and fraud prevention advice to victims and to enable a co-ordinated approach to analysing and tackling fraud. Police recorded fraud figures should be taken in context of the known under-reporting of fraud offences to the police and the continuing decline as recording transfers to Action Fraud.

NFIB data are not accredited National Statistics and are subject to ongoing development before they should be seen as providing an authoritative measure of fraud. The NFIB collates and analyses data from three sources: Action Fraud, CIFAS (a UK-wide fraud prevention service) and the UK Cards Association (the trade association for the card payments industry in the UK).

They will be sourcing data from additional financial and fraud prevention institutions in the future. As responsibility for recording selected fraud offences moves from the police to Action Fraud and data are sourced from additional industry sources, the volume of offences the NFIB reports will increase. It is not possible to separate the dataset into England and Wales only as some sources of NFIB data are UK-wide. 

The CSEW provides a good indication of the proportion of plastic card owners that are victims of plastic card fraud each year. However, this is just one type of fraudulent crime and is not an indication of the extent of fraud in general.

Anti-social behaviour

Anti-social behaviour incidents are recorded by the police in accordance with the National Standard for Incident Recording (NSIR).

A recent report by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC, 2012) raised some concerns over the recording of anti-social behaviour incidents: some incidents recorded by the police as anti-social behaviour should have instead been recorded as crimes; and there was poor identification of repeat, vulnerable and intimidated victims of anti-social behaviour at the first point of contact. More details can be found in section 5.7 of the User Guide.

While incidents are recorded under NSIR in accordance with the same ‘victim focused’ approach that applies for recorded crime, these figures are not accredited National Statistics and are not subject to the same level of quality assurance as the main recorded crime collection. It is known that a small number of police forces are erroneously duplicating some occurrences of a singular ASB incident where multiple calls have been made.

Additionally, the variation in the type of anti-social behaviour incident recorded into the three new strands of ‘Personal’, ‘Nuisance’ and ‘Environmental’ (from 2011/12 onwards) across police forces suggests that there are some discrepancies in how police forces are categorising incidents.

Figures should be interpreted as incidents recorded by the police. These figures do, however, provide an incomplete count of the extent of reported anti-social behaviour as incidents are also reported to other agencies, such as local authorities or social landlords (e.g. problems with nuisance neighbours). Such reports will not generally be included in these police figures.

Notes for Data Sources - further information

  1. This User Guide is the standard source of information on both police recorded crime figures and the CSEW.

  2. The Notifiable Offence List includes all indictable and triable-either-way offences (i.e. offences which could be tried at a crown court) and a few additional closely related summary offences (which would be dealt with by a magistrate). For information on the classifications used for notifiable crimes recorded by the police, see Appendix 1 of the User Guide.

  3. While only two measures are being presented, data are still collected to enable the other measures to be derived; these will be made publicly available through the Economic and Social Data Service.

  4. If there was more than one offender, the incident was included if just one of the offenders matched this criteria.

  5. For more details on the offences that constitute CSEW other household theft see Section 5.2 and Appendix 2 of the User Guide.

  6. The inclusion of offences committed by a known non-family member irrespective of the nature of the offence represents a change to the approach used for the ‘Norms-based’ measure that was previously published in 2010 (Millard and Flatley). This recognises the importance of age in addition to relationship in classifying the severity of an incident.

  7. This excludes items such as pens, stationery, food, toys, cards, cigarettes.

  8. A ‘weapon’ constitutes any item that was considered to be a weapon by the victim; this includes knives, sticks, stones, bottles.

  9. Where there was more than one offender, detailed information was collected if any of the offenders were not pupils at the respondent’s school.

  10. See section 3.2 of the User Guide.

Future plans and changes to statistical reporting

Recent changes

In January 2011 The Home Secretary announced a review of crime statistics to be carried out by the National Statistician which resulted in the publication of the review in June 2011.

One of the eight recommendations was that responsibility for the publication of the crime statistics should move to an independent body (ONS). It was also recommended that ONS assume responsibility for the management of the British Crime Survey (since re-titled as the Crime Survey for England and Wales). The transfer of responsibilities to ONS took effect from 1 April 2012.

The Government accepted the recommendations of the National Statistician in a Written Ministerial Statement.

This release represents the third such publication from ONS. To provide continuity for users of these statistics, the same information previously produced by the Home Office is provided with this release, although in a slightly different format - see below. However, changes are planned for future releases. Users are invited to comment on these through a public consultation on the future dissemination strategy for crime statistics, which will be available on the ONS website from 1 November for eight weeks.

Changes to publication of first release

Following the move of the processing and publication of crime statistics to ONS from the Home Office the standard quarterly releases have been extended to include more long-term trends and other data sources. This is the case for all quarterly releases from July 2012 onwards. The new quarterly publications remove the need for a large annual publication as much of what has previously been published on an annual basis is included in the new style quarterly publications. However, not everything will be covered in the detailed commentary for the quarterly release, so the April to March quarterly release includes tables previously published annually and not presented in the new quarterly releases. These were last published on 19 July 2012 – Annual trend and demographic tables (1.33 Mb Excel sheet) .

Future presentation of crime classifications

ONS will continue to develop the quarterly publications and has proposals to develop a different way of presenting the crime classifications used in the standard quarterly release. These will be shared with users through a range of user engagement activities and formal consultation to seek users’ views will be launched in November 2012.

Changes resulting from new 2011 Census population estimates

This quarterly release presents the most recent crime statistics from two key sources: the CSEW and police recorded crime. Both employ official population estimates in their construction and currently utilise 2010 based population projections. Following the 2011 Census ONS are anticipating publishing population estimates for mid-2011 and preceding years in spring 2013. A programme of work has been identified to bring CSEW and police recorded crime figures in line with new population estimates and will include any back series necessary where population estimates have been affected prior and including 2011.  Further details of the programme of work including a timetable for the release of revised figures (and micro data with adjusted weights) will be published in the next quarterly release in January 2013.

List of products

The following are URL links associated with the production of Crime Statistics.

  1. Pre-April 2012 publications on the Home Office website

  2. Historic police recorded crime

  3. Previous quarterly publication

  4. User Guide to Crime Statistics for England and Wales

  5. British Crime Survey 2010/11 Technical Report

  6. Crime in England and Wales 2010-11. Published 14 July 2011

  7. Public perceptions of policing, engagement with police and victimisation: Findings from the 2010/11 British Crime Survey’ Supplementary Volume 1 to Crime in England and Wales 2010/11, Home Office Statistical Bulletin 18/11. Published 17 November 2011

  8. Homicides, Firearm Offences and Intimate Violence 2010/11’ Supplementary Volume 2 to Crime in England and Wales 2010/11, Home Office Statistical Bulletin 02/12. Published 19 January 2012

  9. Hate crime, cyber security and the experience of crime among children: Findings from the 2010/11 British Crime Survey’ Supplementary Volume 3 to Crime in England and Wales 2010/11, Home Office Statistical Bulletin 06/12. Published 29 March 2012

  10. National Statistician’s Review of Crime Statistics

  11. UK Data Archive

In addition to these National Statistics releases, provisional management information drawn from police recorded crime figures, published at street level each month, is available:

  1. Police recorded crime, street level mapping tool

References

Chaplin, R., Flatley, J. and Smith, K. (Eds), 2011, ‘Crime in England and Wales 2010/11’, Home Office Statistical Bulletin 10/11

Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC), 2012, ‘The crime scene: A review of police crime and incident reports’ 

Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC), 2012, ‘A step in the right direction: The policing of anti-social behaviour’.

Home Office, 2012a, ‘Crime in England and Wales: Quarterly Update to September 2011’, Home Office Statistical Bulletin 01/12

Home Office, 2012b, ‘Hate crime, cyber security and the experience of crime among children: Findings from the 2010/11 British Crime Survey’ Supplementary Volume 3 to Crime in England and Wales 2010/11, Home Office Statistical Bulletin 06/12

Home Office, 2012, ‘Drug Misuse Declared: Findings from the 2011/12 Crime Survey for England and Wales (2nd Edition)

Moon, D. and Flatley, J. (Eds), Parfrement-Hopkins, J., Hall, P., Hoare, J., Lau, I., and Innes, J., 2011, ‘Public perceptions of policing, engagement with police and victimisation: Findings from the 2010/11 British Crime Survey’ Supplementary Volume 1 to Crime in England and Wales 2010/11, Home Office Statistical Bulletin 18/11

National Statistician, 2011, ‘National Statistician’s Review of Crime Statistics: England and Wales’

Office for National Statistics, 2012, ‘User Guide to Crime Statistics for England and Wales’

Sivarajasingam, V., Wells, J.P., Moore, S., Morgan, P. and Shepherd, J.P., 2012, ‘Violence in England and Wales 2011. An accident and Emergency Perspective’ Cardiff: Cardiff University

Smith, K., Osborne, S., Lau, I., Britton, A., 2012, ‘Homicides, Firearm Offences and Intimate Violence 2010/11’ Supplementary Volume 2 to Crime in England and Wales 2010/11, Home Office Statistical Bulletin 02/12

Background notes

  1. National Statistics are produced to high professional standards set out in the Code of Practice for Official Statistics. They undergo regular quality assurance reviews to ensure that they meet customer needs. They are produced free from any political interference.

  2. Details of policy governing the release of new data are available from Media Relations Office.

  3. © Crown copyright 2012.

    You may re-use this information (not including logos) free of charge in any format or medium, under the terms of the Open Government Licence. To view this licence, go to:  www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/doc/open-government-licence/ or write to the Information Policy Team, The National Archives, Kew, London TW9 4DU Email: psi@nationalarchives.gsi.gov.uk

  4. Next quarterly publication: 24 January 2013.

    Future thematic reports due to be published:

    Focus on Public Perceptions of the Police: Findings from the 2011/12 Crime Survey for England and Wales: 27 November 2012.

    Focus on Violent Crime: Findings from the 2011/12 Crime Survey for England and Wales and Police Recorded Crime: 7 February 2013

    Focus on Property Crime: Findings from the 2011/12 Crime Survey for England and Wales and Police Recorded Crime: March/April 2013 (date to be confirmed)

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  5. Details of the policy governing the release of new data are available by visiting www.statisticsauthority.gov.uk/assessment/code-of-practice/index.html or from the Media Relations Office email: media.relations@ons.gsi.gov.uk

    The United Kingdom Statistics Authority has designated these statistics as National Statistics, in accordance with the Statistics and Registration Service Act 2007 and signifying compliance with the Code of Practice for Official Statistics.

    Designation can be broadly interpreted to mean that the statistics:

    • meet identified user needs;
    • are well explained and readily accessible;
    • are produced according to sound methods; and
    • are managed impartially and objectively in the public interest.

    Once statistics have been designated as National Statistics it is a statutory requirement that the Code of Practice shall continue to be observed.

Statistical contacts

Name Phone Department Email
John Flatley +44 (0)207 5928695 Crime Statistics and Analysis Division crimestatistics@ons.gsi.gov.uk
Get all the tables for this publication in the data section of this publication .
Content from the Office for National Statistics.
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