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Knife crime up 22% in England and Wales

CRIME: Figures show an increase in knife crime

KNIFE CRIME has risen by 22% in England and Wales, new figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show.

The statistics, which refer to offences recorded by the police and data from the Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) in the year ending December 2017, also reveal that crimes involving firearms rose 11% to 6,604.

Alexa Bradley, crime statistics and analysis, Office for National Statistics, said: "Today’s figures show that, for most types of offence, the picture of crime has been fairly stable, with levels much lower than the peak seen in the mid-1990s. Eight in ten adults had not experienced any of the crimes asked about in our survey in the latest year.

“However, we have seen an increase in the relatively rare, but "high-harm" violent offences such as homicide, knife crime and gun crime, a trend that has been emerging over the previous two years. We have also seen evidence that increases in some types of theft have continued, in particular vehicle-related theft and burglary.”

The figures show that there was no overall change in violent offences in England and Wales, according to CSEW estimates but there were almost 40,000 police-recorded crimes involving a knife or sharp instrument, a rise from the previous year.

Gun and knife crime offences tend to be be disproportionately concentrated in London and other metropolitan areas.

Homicides – excluding terrorist attacks in London and Manchester and events at Hillsborough in 1989 – were also up 9% to 653.

Although in some cases improved recording and more proactive policing may have contributed to the rises of certain crimes, the ONS say there have also been "genuine increases" in violent crime.

Data for NHS hospitals in England have also shown an increase in admissions for assault by a sharp object and increases in assault by firearm discharge.

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