More than half of all violent crime not reported to police

Just 44% of violent crime was reported to the police last year. Picture: John Devlin
Just 44% of violent crime was reported to the police last year. Picture: John Devlin
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MORE THAN half of all crimes in Scotland - including violent attacks - don’t get reported to the police, officials figures have shown.

Many victims say they don’t think the police could do anything about it, according to the latest Scottish Crime and Justice Survey.

But crime levels in Scotland are continuing to fall and justice secretary Michael Matheson said more more work is needed to reassure Scots.

“The public still think they are at least two to three times more at risk of experiencing a crime than is actually likely,” he said.

Just 38% of crimes were reported to the police in 2014/15, the figures today show. This is down slightly on the on 2012/13 when the figure was 39%.

But this compares with the onset of devolution in 1999 when more than half (53%) of crimes were reported.

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Just 44% of violent crime was reported to the police last year, compared to 36% of property crimes. Reporting rates were highest for housebreaking (62%).

But the majority of adults (74 per cent) felt very safe or fairly safe walking alone after dark, up from 66 per cent in 2008/09.

The likelihood of becoming a victim of crime in Scotland has also fallen to 14.5 per cent, meaning one in seven adults are now at risk, lower than the equivalent in England and Wales at 15.9 per cent.

The estimated number of crimes also fell by around a third since 2008/09 from 1,045,000 to 688,000 in 2014/15.

Mr Matheson, said: “It is extremely encouraging to see that the risk of becoming a victim of crime in Scotland continues to fall, with the likelihood of experiencing crime remaining lower than in England and Wales.

“The country is becoming a safer place thanks to the continued efforts of our communities and law enforcement agencies and I am glad this message seems to be getting through to the public, with those surveyed claiming to feel safer in their neighbourhoods than in previous years.”