Crime Being Reduced? Really?

Sounds pretty straight forward, doesn’t it?
You report a crime, the police investigate it. If, on the balance of
probability, a crime has occurred, it is then recorded by the police. It
may be that from here on, there is further investigation, or, if there
are no further lines of enquiry, the matter will be filed.

So, logically, you might think that all crimes recorded by the police go
to make up the stats that are used by the British Crime Survey.

The BritishCrime Survey has long been used to measure the trend of
crime in your area, and nationally.

However, when you realise what is left out of these figures, the picture
changes.  For instance, crimes not taken into account (or counted) by the Crime
Survey are; retail theft (including shoplifting), rape, murder, fraud
and crimes against the under 16s.

Don’t ask me why this is. I don’t know.

So, already the picture is not as accurate as it could be.

Let me clarify.  If you live in an area
where there are lots of shoplifting offences,
fraud and crimes against the under 16s (eg mobile phone thefts), but
only small numbers of criminal damage, then only the criminal damage
offences are counted by the Crime Survey. To the average person, it
appears that there is very little crime in the area. Not strictly true,
though. Is it?

I know for a fact that offences like shoplifting are on the increase.
The reasons for this are many.  But the two main reasons are drugs and poverty.
In this day and age, drug use is on the increase, and more people are
living in poverty and therefore can’t afford to buy food to feed themselves.

Drug users will shoplift in order to fund their habit. Steal food, sell
it on and use the money for drugs. No secrets there. But what about
those those stealing in order to feed themselves?

It’s sad, but it goes on.

And none of these shoplifting offences are counted by the Crime Survey.

So, next time a Govt official tells you that crime is on the decrease,
will you believe them?