Britain safest it has been for three decades

Crime in England and Wales has fallen by 9% to its lowest level since records began three decades ago.

According to official figures released yesterday, crime in England and Wales has fallen to its lowest level since comparable records began in 1982.

Offences recorded by the annual British Crime Survey fell by 9% in the past twelve months, with the chances of being a repeat victim of car theft, violence or burglary also dropping to their lowest recorded levels.

David Blunt, the Home Office’s chief statistician, said the latest fall in the figures might be seen as surprising following expectations that the recession would lead to more crime.

New figures show substantial falls in car crime, down 17%, and domestic burglary, down 9%.

But Home Secretary, Theresa May, suggests the statistics offer a partial picture of the true level of crime, concluding: ‘Nobody should accept a situation where at least 26,000 people fall victim to crime every day.’

Blunt acknowledged criticisms that the survey did not cover some of the more serious violent crimes such as rape and sexual assaults, which have risen by 6%.

He  added that the murder rate in Britain has fallen by 6% in 2010-2011, gun crime has fallen by 3% and the latest credit card fraud figures also showed a fall for the first time.

However, one worrying aspect of the figures is that while the overall number of crimes has fallen, the police detection rate is falling even faster.

Just 28% of the offences recorded by police were thoroughly investigated and brought to justice, which represents a fall of 10% the past year despite the drop in crime.

Have you been a victim of crime since the recession hit, or do you simply have an opinion on these latest figures? Get in touch with Marie Claire by posting your comment below.

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