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London: Gun and knife offences soared

The number of gun and knife offences in London soared in the last 12 months, following several years of falls.

There were jumps in robbery, theft, violence, gun and knife crime in 2016/17 in London and police say the pattern is being replicated around the country.

The disclosures will reignite the debate over resources following warnings from a string of senior figures over the impacts of further budget squeezes on forces.

The figures showed a 42 per cent rise in the number of overall offences of gun crime and an increase of 24 per cent rise in the number of knife crime offences, with 12,074 offences last year, compared to 9,742 in 2015/16.

More worryingly, there was also a rise in the number of guns being fired on London’s streets, up from 239 cases in 2015/16 to 306 cases in the last financial year.

There was also a 20 per cent increase in the rate of knife attacks involving injuries to victims, up from 3,663 to 4,415 in 2016/17.

Overall, the number of offences in London rose for the first time in several years.

A total of 774,737 crimes was recorded in the capital last year – compared to 740,933 in the previous year. a rise of 4.5 per cent.

The figures, which did not include cyber crimes, showed increases in the number of muggings, sex offences, thefts and violent offences.

There was a 26 per cent leap in the rate of motor vehicle thefts and a 13 per cent rise in personal robberies.

However, the number of burglaries in private houses continued to fall.  

Scotland Yard said it was concerned about the rises in gun and knife crime, but pointed out the increases came after several years of falling crime.


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