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Offensive Weapons

Volume 497: debated on Tuesday 13 October 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what estimate his Department has made of the change in the number of knife and sharp instrument offences recorded by the police between 2007-08 and 2008-09. (289596)

Comparisons between 2007-08 and 2008-09 are possible for the offences of homicide (figures for 2008-09 are provisional), attempted murder and robbery.

Homicides and attempted murders are rare and account for less than one per cent. of all knife offences. As such, comparisons should be interpreted with caution.

Information for these offences is given in the following table.

Additional offence categories (threats to kill, ABH, sexual assault and rape offences where a knife was involved) were added to the knife crime collection in 2008-09; therefore comparisons are not possible.

For GBH offences, it is not possible to compare between 2007-08 and 2008-09. This is due to a change in the clarification rules for recording GBH with intent, and a change in the definition of GBH without intent. Under advice from the National Statistician the offences of GBH with and without intent and ABH and other injury were combined when published. Further information is given in Box 2.1 on page 14 of Crime in England and Wales, 2008-09: Volume 1.

Number of knife and sharp instrument offences recorded by the police for homicide, attempted murder and robbery

Offence

2007-08

2008-09

Percentage change between 2007-08 and 2008-09

Homicide1

270

252

-7

Attempted murder

245

271

11

Robbery

17,058

16,701

-2

1 Includes provisional figures for 2008-09. For 2007-08, offences are those currently recorded by the police as at 4 November 2008 and are subject to revision as cases are dealt with by the police and by the courts, or as further information becomes available.

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what estimate he has made of the number of (a) deaths and (b) injuries arising from knives used in the course of a crime (i) in total and (ii) per person in (A) England and (B) Wales in each year since 1997. (291170)

[holding answer 14 September 2009]: Centrally available information relates to homicides by sharp instrument recorded in England and Wales each year from 1997-98 to 2007-08.

Injuries data are not collected centrally.

Homicides currently recorded1 where apparent method of killing is sharp instrument2: England and Wales 1997-98 to2007-083

Year offence initially recorded as homicide4

England

Wales

1997-98

191

11

1998-99

189

12

1999-2000

204

9

2000-01

208

7

2001-02

247

14

2002-03

256

10

2003-04

239

3

2004-05

247

13

2005-06

212

7

2006-07

258

11

2007-08

259

11

1 As at 4 November 2008; figures are revised as cases are dealt with by the police and by the courts, or as further information becomes available.

2 Includes knives as well as other sharp instruments.

3 Data for 2008-09 are scheduled to be published in January 2009.

4 Offences are shown according to the year in which the police initially recorded the offence as homicide. This is not necessarily the year in which the incident took place or the year in which any court decision was made.