2012 has seen a large reduction in murder in London and across England and Wales.
With a 20% reduction in London murders in 2012 (compared to 2011); 2012 could be the first time in over three decades that murders in London have been under a 100 in a year. Police reported crime data suggests 98 (maybe 99) murders in 2012 compared to around 120 in 2011. This has reduced London’s murder rate to 12.1 per million population (London population is 8,174,100) see London Murder page
Much has been said about potential police activities that have brought this number of murders down despite a growing London population and greater diversity in nationalities, religions, communities and cultures, but it is probably time we stop the cycle of thanking the police and authorities for crime reductions, yet when crime goes up, its everyone else’s fault. The evidence suggests that these massive reductions are a change in how individuals and communities in London view themselves and choose to conduct themselves, rather than a step change in policing.
So is this massive reduction in murder down to the police and the criminal justice system?
Are the murder reductions due to better Emergency Health Services?
No I believe it is time to hand back the accolades and plaudits to the communities in London for this massive reduction in murder rather than continually lauding police and statutory authorities.
Murders in England and Wales
Murders in England and Wales may possibly be under 560 in 2012, continuing the reductions over the last decade.
Austerity UK means that Police numbers and funding are being cut, youth clubs and community crime services are closing. Stress within families is greater…. This is against a backdrop of an increasing number of Londoners and more diverse London population …. despite all the theories that suggest murder volumes should be increasing; murder volumes and rates are actually falling.
However these reductions are not entirely a surprise: murder volumes across the world are falling and recessions in the past have tended to bring along with them reductions in serious violent crime and murder, and increases in acquisitive crime – although the acquisitive crime increase in this recession hasn’t occurred in most parts of the UK.
Theories about crime, sentencing and police numbers are being blown out the water. It’s time for a few ideas about why we are seeing this crime reduction despite local and national services being cut.
Official data on violent crime in England and Wales to June 2012, is available on this link