The Metropolitan Police Service has released its end-of-year crime statistics today, Thursday, 25 April. The figures compare the financial year April to March 2018/19 with April to March 2017/18.
Whilst these figures show that overall there have been rises in crime, the rate of increase has significantly slowed since last year. There has also been progress made in tackling and reducing violent crime in the Capital.
Overall crime - total notifiable offences (TNOs) - has increased by 4% (829,418 to 862,781 offences). However, many of the percentage rises are lower than the previous year (17/18). These are in the categories of TNOs (6.4% / 4.02%); sexual offences (11.0% / 2.4%); robbery (35.8% / 4.3%); theft (8.1% / 3.2%); and burglary (11.7% / 4.7%).
Significantly, the Met is making progress in its drive against violent crime, achieving reductions in murder and stabbings. In the past 12 months (18/19 FY) there were 122 homicides recorded by the Met compared with 163 in the previous 12 months (nine of which were as a result of the terror attacks that occurred at London Bridge and Finsbury Park in 2017).
Knife injuries have fallen by 9.6% from 4,732 to 4,277. Our committed focus on tackling violence has contributed to knife crime overall stabilising and showing only a slight increase of 0.5%, although injuries are down. Overall gun crime offences also have dropped by 6.8%.
The decreases in the most serious violent crime represent the results of a concerted enforcement effort by police, supported by emergency healthcare services, prevention and diversionary work with partners from central and local government, education and the community.
Over the past year, and the months preceding it, the Met increased the resources available to specialist units such as the Violent Crime Task Force, Trident Gangs Command and Homicide Investigation as well as implementing a Met-wide response to tackle violent crime.
However, less serious violence continued to increase over the past 12 months. Violence against the Person (which includes harassment offences) has increased by 6.8%, violence with injury has also slightly increased by 0.5% and violence without injury has increased by 10.9%.
Assistant Commissioner Mark Simmons, Frontline Policing, said: “Tackling violent crime and knife crime on the streets of London has been and remains the top priority for the Met. We are working tirelessly – day and night – to identify and pursue offenders, help bring perpetrators to justice, take weapons off the street, support victims, engage and reassure the public, and keep our communities safe.
“As a result, there have been reductions in homicide and stabbings – horrific crimes that impact most on people’s lives.
“We will persist in our efforts to bear down on violent crime, take weapons off the street, support victims, engage and reassure the public and keep our communities safe.
“I am also encouraged that, despite the rises in many other crimes, including robbery, burglary and theft, the increases have not been as high as the previous year. We have been working hard to keep crime levels as low as possible.
“However, we are not under any illusion about the challenges and we certainly aren’t complacent. We continue to work under pressures that stretch our resources; there are still too many lives tragically and needlessly lost; and too many people severely injured. I am deeply saddened by the numbers of people who are still losing their lives to violence and my thoughts are with all the victims' families and loved ones who have experienced such devastating tragedies.
“Operations are planned for coming weeks and months to ensure the momentum against violence continues. We are also working on plans which will both help the public protect themselves from many crimes and put greater pressure on those who commit them.”