7 year decline in violent crimes in England and Wales comes to an end
Recent data published by A&E departments in England and Wales shows that, for the first time since 2008, the number of incidents involving violent crime has failed to decline from the previous year’s studies.
Information obtained from 91 NHS Bodies shows that 210,215 people needed treatment after being violently attacked during the 12 months leading up to September 2015.
It remains the case that the most likely victims of violent crime are younger men aged between 18 and 30. A probable cause for this figure is due to the higher levels of alcohol consumption in this age bracket and the fact that this is the most common group of individuals to walk home alone late at night. Although young men remain the most likely victims, the Hospital data does show that violent attacks on men fell by 4% last year.
The data in the study also shows that the peak times for violent crime are at weekends and in the months of May, August and December.
An unlikely revelation from such data shows that attacks on women over the age of 50 appear to have soared by 20%, from 5,156 in 2014 to 6,165 in 2015. Neither we nor the authorities really know why these attacks are on the increase.
It is possible that, with the increased awareness and help available to victims of domestic violence, victims of this type of crime are more willing to seek medical attention. If this is the case, it may be that the number of victims is not on the increase, but simply the number of victims seeking medical attention following and attack is rising. If so, this can only be considered a positive.
The study also provides the only National figure for children injured due to violent crime. Thankfully, the injuries to victims under the age of 10 continues to decline, with a decrease of 9 percent from 2014 figure.
Figures due out tomorrow as part of the Police Recorded Crime data is expected to be at odds with this data, but there has been changes to the way that data is collected and the unfortunate reality is that people do not always contact the police after a criminal attack, meaning that the Hospital data is the most reliable indicator of violent crime data that we have.
Weighing up the increase and decrease seen in these figures, it appears that the previous 7 year continuous decline of violent assaults has now come an end.
It is hoped that this plateau is only temporary and that the number of victims to violent crimes continues to decrease in the future.