Crime, according to official figures, is decreasing in this sceptred isle thanks to the diligence of our hard working constabularies and the ingenuity of some very clever statisticians. We can, at long last, emerge from the dark ages of criminality and sleep soundly in our beds.
That font of all knowledge the Office for National Statistics has decreed that this England, this other Eden, demi-paradise is a more peaceful and safer place than in days of yore. Given the impeccable track record of the ONS proving that employment is rising, benefit claims are down, the deficit is being reduced, government borrowing is at an all time low, the root vegetable crop is the best ever and there are two suns in the sky providing eternal daylight, it seems churlish to question the data. In this precious stone set in the silver sea that is the West Midlands, our local Old Bill are the joint top performing metropolitan force for cutting crime. Offences, it seems, are down by a massive 13 per cent which, in the weird world of statistics equates to an extra 26,437 people able to describe themselves` as being not victims of crime. Obviously extrapolating this calculation suggests that every single crime committed has an impact on more than 2,000 people.
West Midlands Police, in an illuminating press release,
suggest that robbery is down by 30 per cent which is double the national average. Unfortunately the data has not factored in the goings on at Walsall Council House where cabinet members have awarded themselves an increase in allowances as a reward for incompetence and maladministration. A 30 per cent reduction in robberies equates, according to the figures, to a grateful 2,389 people not being robbed. That`s 800 victims per single robbery. Burglary is down by 13 per cent which means that 2,195 will not now need to call their insurance companies or emergency glaziers and the 180 people living in each burgled household will not need stress counselling. Injuries due to violent crime is down by 15 per cent with the happy result that 2,389 victims will not end up spending the night at A and E. That`s a 160 fit and healthy people allowed to live their lives without injury because of a single incidence of violent crime.
The above interpretation of the scant detail is, of course, utterly preposterous but is just as ridiculous as the blue sky thinking of the press consultants employed by the boys in blue. Even the only black cloud has a silver lining. An increase in sexual offences is explained away by a campaign to encourage victims to report such vile crimes. The stats have been spoilt by the victims and not by the perpetrators. There is no data relating to unreported domestic violence, child abuse, racist and homophobic abuse, disability hate crime, casual street violence and white collar fraud. Atos and the DWP, are after all, getting away with murder.
By now, anyone within sniffing distance of a computer will have seen the disturbing footage of a violent and unprovoked physical attack on a cyclist in Moseley. There is little more to say other than that there is clear evidence that a series of crimes were committed. We can argue a defence against dangerous driving; threatening behaviour, common assault, criminal damage, perjury and a variety of public order offences but that would be a futile argument. Because the perpetrator said “sorry”, had no previous convictions and was prepared to cough up some dosh, white van man upset at being slightly delayed by another human being on a bike faces no charges. It is a complete coincidence that recorded crime is decreasing.
When challenged, the plod took to social media to talk of hypothetical “red mist” and Home Office guidelines. One wonders if white van man would have been dealt with so leniently if he decided to attack a copper or, given Home Office guidelines, a constable had witnessed the unprovoked violence and made an arrest. Knock a copper off a bike and you get Tazered. Knock a not a copper off a bike and you will be told not to be a naughty boy. Does anyone remember Andrew Mitchell?
In the face of massive cutbacks, if the police service has to retain any credibility with the public, it should resist Home Office guidelines and prosecute the likes of white van man and protect the vast majority of sensible road users from the idiot who thinks he has a right to the highway regardless of whatever is in his way. The precedent that has been set is rather alarming. I can, if I wish, endanger the life of a cycling police officer when driving my vehicle, stop in the middle of the road to confront him or her, pursue them and punch them to the ground. I can now threaten them with further violence and not suffer the wasteful irrelevance of being charged. As I have no previous convictions and am affluent enough to pay compensation, I will not have my reputation damaged.
It`s not hard to understand why crime is decreasing.