Justice Analytical Services (JAS) Safer Communities and Justice Statistics Monthly Data Report: August 2023 edition

This report contains summary statistics covering a number of important justice and safer communities statistics. It is published with up to date statistics every month.

Summary statistics on crime in general

Police recorded crime is at one of the lowest levels seen since 1974 and is down 13% since 2013-14. The total number of crimes recorded by the police in Scotland in 2022-23 was 289,352. This is 2,888 crimes (or 1%) higher than the level recorded in 2021-22. Over the past ten years, total recorded crime in Scotland has decreased by 13%. In the last year, crimes recorded under Coronavirus related legislation fell from 3,913 to zero, while all other crimes collectively increased by 2%.

Annual number of crimes recorded by the police, 2013-14 to 2022-23. Last updated June 2023. Next update due June 2024.

Crime has fallen by 46% since 2008-09. Results from the Scottish Crime and Justice Survey (SCJS) show that around 1 in 8 adults were victims of crime in 2019-20 (11.9%) compared to 1 in 5 in 2008-09 (20.4%). The estimated number of crimes fell by 46% over the same period, and by 21% since 2016-17. The SCJS detected no change in the overall victimisation rate between 2018-19 and 2019-20.

Total crimes as reported by the Scottish Crime & Justice Survey, 2008-09 to 2019-20. Last updated March 2021.

Recorded violent crime decreased in the most recent year. Non-sexual crimes of violence recorded by the police decreased by 1%, from 69,286 in 2021-22 to 68,870 in 2022-23. Common assault (also down 1%) makes up the clear majority (84%) of all non-sexual crimes of violence recorded in 2022-23. The SCJS showed a 39% fall in violent crime between 2008-09 and 2019-20 and that an estimated 48% of violent crime in 2019-20 was reported to the police.

Recorded sexual crimes decreased in the most recent year. Sexual crimes decreased by 3%, from a high of 15,049 in 2021-22 to 14,602 in 2022-23. These crimes are now at the second highest level seen since 1971, the first year for which comparable groups are available. Multiple factors lie behind the long term increase in recorded sexual crime including a greater willingness of victims to come forward, more historical reporting, more online offending and the impact of new legislation. The SCJS for 2018-20 (2018-19 & 2019-20 combined) estimated that 3.6% of adults experienced at least one serious sexual assault since the age of 16, unchanged from 2008-09.

Women more likely to experience partner abuse. The SCJS, for 2018-20, estimated that 3.2% of respondents had experienced partner abuse in the year prior to interview. A higher proportion of women than men experienced this, at 3.7% and 2.6% respectively.

Decrease in crime clear up rate. The clear up rate for all recorded crimes was 53.3% in 2022-23, down from 54.0% in 2021-22. Crimes against society (93%), non-sexual crimes of violence (67%) and sexual crime (53%) continued to have higher clear up rates in 2022-23 than crimes of dishonesty (31%) and damage and reckless behaviour (29%).

No. of victims of homicide at record low. There were 53 homicide victims recorded by the police in Scotland in 2021-22, a 16% decrease from 2012-13 and the lowest value since comparable records began in 1976.

Annual number of victims of homicide recorded by the police, 2012-13 to 2021-22. Last updated October 2022. Next update due October 2023.

Slight decrease in recorded domestic abuse incidents. There were 64,807 incidents of domestic abuse recorded by the police in 2021-22, a decrease of 1% on 2020-21. In 2021-22, 39% of all incidents recorded by the police included the recording of at least one crime or offence.

Annual number of incidents of domestic abuse recorded by the police, broken down by whether crime/offence involved, 2016-17 to 2021-22. Last updated November 2022.

Small increase in firearm offences. Between 2018-19 and 2019-20 the number of crimes and offences in which a firearm was alleged to have been involved increased by 3% (from 332 to 341 offences). The 2018-19 and 2019-20 totals are the lowest and second lowest, respectively, since comparable records began in 1980.

Number of recorded crimes and offences where a firearm was alleged to be involved, 2015-16 to 2019-20. Last updated June 2022.


Email: Justice_Analysts@gov.scot

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