Homicide in Scotland, 2003 - Statistics Published

Summary statistics on homicides recorded in Scotland in 2003

This document is part of a collection


Notes on statistics included in this Release

1. This Statistics Release (and the biennial bulletins) gives details on cases of homicide - that is murder and common law culpable homicide. Causing death by dangerous driving and causing death by careless driving while under the influence of drink or drugs are excluded. (In 2003 there were 47 such crimes recorded by the police, including 10 of death by careless driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.)

2. The summary figures presented are derived from information provided by the police on each case they initially record as homicide. A single case of homicide is counted for each act of murder or culpable homicide irrespective of the number of perpetrators or victims.

3. A homicide case is included against the year in which it is recorded by the police. This is not necessarily the year in which the offence took place, the year in which the accused is brought to trial for the crime, or the year in which the case is finally disposed of by the courts.

4. The figures given in this Statistics Release are as known to the Scottish Executive on 10 November 2004. The initial classification of a case as homicide is made by the police; this will generally be murder. This classification may be altered as a result of decisions taken in the course of criminal proceedings. Some cases initially classified as homicide will, on the basis of criminal proceedings, no longer be classified as such at a later date. This happens in cases where it is found that a homicide had not in fact taken place at all, for example where the main accused person is found guilty of a lesser offence, such as serious assault; or where the decision has been made not to proceed with the case, for example if it is concluded that the victim committed suicide. For these reasons, and as a result of continual data checking, the figures for 2003 and previous years which will appear in the next bulletin may differ slightly from those given here.

5. The population data used to calculate the rate figures given in Tables 1, 3 and 6 and in Chart 1 are the relevant mid-year population estimates prepared by the General Register Office for Scotland.

6. This Statistics Release may be viewed on the Scottish Executive Internet Web Site: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/stats/bulletins/00377-00.asp

7. Copies of the November 2003 statistical bulletin on homicide are available at a cost of 2.00 from Scottish Executive Publication Sales, Blackwell's Bookshop, 53 South Bridge, Edinburgh, EH1 1YS.

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