Recorded Crime In Scotland, 2015-16
This bulletin presents National Statistics on crimes and offences recorded by the police in 2015-16. Statistics on crimes and offences recorded by the police provide a measure of the volume of criminal activity with which the police are faced. Crimes recorded by the police do not reveal the incidence of all crime committed since not all crimes are reported to the police. For a definition of crimes recorded, refer to Annex 1.
Key Points from Recorded Crime in Scotland
Between 2014-15 and 2015-16:
Crimes recorded by the police in Scotland decreased by 4% from 256,350 to 246,243. This is the lowest level of recorded crime since 1974.
- Non-sexual crimes of violence increased by 7% from 6,357 to 6,775. The recording of these crimes is at the second lowest level seen since 1974.
- Sexual crimes increased by 7% from 9,557 to 10,273. The recording of these crimes is at the highest level seen since 1971, the first year for which comparable crime groups are available.
- Crimes of dishonesty decreased by 9% from 126,857 to 115,789. These crimes have been on a downward trend since they peaked in 1991.
- Fire-raising, vandalism etc. increased by 4% from 52,091 to 54,226. These crimes are at their second lowest level since they peaked in 2006-07.
- Other crimes decreased by 4% from 61,488 to 59,180. These crimes have been on a generally downward trend since they peaked in 2006-07.
Offences recorded by the police in Scotland decreased by 11% from 379,498 to 339,193.
- Miscellaneous offences decreased by 8% from 183,513 to 168,896.
- Motor vehicle offences decreased by 13% from 195,985 to 170,297.
An Additional Analysis of Common Assault Offences
This bulletin also includes a topical analysis of police recorded common assault, whereby a random sample of 500 common assault offence records from 2014-15 were reviewed.
Key Points from research into common assault:
- For those cases that involved at least one strike against the complainer, the most common actions taken by the perpetrator(s) were pushing, shoving, pulling or grabbing (46%), followed by slapping or punching (43%) and kicking (19%).
- Around half of common assaults involved no or very little injury to the complainer. The remaining common assaults (again around half) involve some degree of injury to the complainer.
- Complainer gender split equally between male and female (49% in each case - with the remaining 2% unknown). Perpetrators were much more likely to be male or all male groups (74% of cases). 61% of common assaults occurred between people who know each other.
Official Statistics on Clear up rates
In addition to the National Statistics on police recorded crimes and offences, this bulletin also presents Official Statistics on crimes and offences cleared up by the police in 2015-16.
Clear up rates measure the percentage of recorded crimes that have been cleared up. For further information on the statistical designation of this data and a definition of clear up rates, please refer to Chapter 4.
The clear up rate for all recorded crimes increased by 1.2 percentage points from 50.4% to 51.6%.