The chief constable of Northamptonshire Police says he is confident the latest crime figures which show reported violent offences up by 29 per cent “reflect reality”.
New figures show the force recorded 12,872 violence offences in the past year. Of these, 7,136 were violence without injury and 5,736 violence with injury.
Compared to the previous year, violence with injury has increased by 22.5 per cent and violence without injury by 38 per cent.
The total number of violent offences has increased from 9981 to 12, 872, and increase of 29 per cent or 2,891 offences.
A spokesman for Northamptonshire Police said some of the increase can be explained by changes to the Home Office counting rules, with additional offences now being recorded (i.e malicious communications such as cyber-bullying).
The spokesman said: “Violence levels have increased most notably since the crime data integrity inspection in April 2014 with local audits confirming violence is recorded robustly by Northamptonshire Police.“The force is not out of kilter with the national picture for violence and has seen strong reductions in serious acquisitive crime (burglary, vehicle crime and robbery).”
Northamptonshire Police was criticised in a HMIC report last year for the accuracy of its crime reporting, with inspectors finding the force was failing to record a number of crimes reported
Speaking at the launch of a new three-month crackdown on violent offences, chief constable Simon Edens, who joined the force in July, said he believed the figures were now more accurate than previous years.
He said: “We want people to report violent crime when it happens. The crime figures should reflect reality and, as a force, our figures give a more accurate reflection than in the past.”