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Crimes of Violence: Drugs

Volume 474: debated on Monday 21 April 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many and what percentage of offenders involved in violent incidents were under the influence of (a) drugs and (b) drink in (i) England and Wales and (ii) each police force area in each year since 1997. (199398)

Information on the number and percentage of offenders involved in violent incidents that were under the influence of drugs or alcohol is not available.

However, the British Crime Survey (BCS) routinely collects information on the proportion of violent incidents in England and Wales, where the victim believed the offender(s) to be under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

According to the latest BCS (2006-07), the offender was thought to be under the influence of alcohol in 46 per cent. of violent incidents, and under the influence of drugs in 17 per cent. of violent incidents (see table 1 for figures for all available years since 1997). The sample size of the BCS is not sufficient to provide such estimates by police force area.

Table 1: Percentage of violent incidents where offender/s were thought to be under the influence of drink or drugs, England and Wales

1997

1999

2001-02

2002-03

2003-04

2004-05

2005-06

2006-07

Under influence of drink

Yes

42

40

47

44

50

48

44

46

No

48

50

44

45

40

43

47

44

Don’t know

10

9

9

11

10

9

8

10

Unweighted base

946

1,052

1,340

1,455

1,465

1,529

1,567

1,658

Under influence of drugs

Yes

18

18

21

20

19

18

23

17

No

53

55

56

52

50

52

53

56

Don’t know

29

27

23

27

30

30

25

28

Unweighted base

946

1,052

1,340

1,455

1,465

1,529

1,567

1,658

Notes:

1. Percentages may not sum to 100 due to rounding.

2. BCS violence in 1997, 1999, 2001-02, 2002-03, 2003-04, 2004-05 and 2005/06 includes common assault, wounding, robbery and snatch theft.

3. BCS violence in 2006-07 excludes snatch theft.