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Saturday, January 24, 2015

Knife crime statistics up to Sept 2014 (official release Jan 2015)

KNIFE crime data is back in the news this week; annual figures up to September 2014 have been reported into the public domain. I've made a little time to update my look at the latest statistics release.

First, some initial interpretation of the recorded knife crime stats...

As per my previous assessments, the trend of selected offences committed with knives and other sharp instruments continues to drop, but only slightly; the figures Sept 2013 to Sept 2014 are down 2% on the previous year to 25,721 (knife crime in 2010 was reported as 32,890).

Statistically, is that assessment accurate? Well, there looks to have been a decent downward trend since 2010. A trend of this nature should be a good sign, although it's natural to query the coincidence of the data being downward since the general election in 2010; politicians are wanting to keep their quite comfortable jobs in this year's election and will be keen to demonstrate they've brought down crime figures.

So, to repeat, with an election looming, the topline of this knife crime report implies there has been a downward trend - but look more closely and we see police-recorded crime has not fallen. No change is reported for police recorded crime, with rape and sexual offences at highest levels since the early 2000s (maybe political and organisational reasons for the police trend here).

So, now I'm going to briefly consider how that data is reported this time compared to one of my previous assessments...

To show you how our public officials have a highly dubious record tackling crime and have had a poor grasp of crime figures in the past, let me shine a chink of a spotlight on what they seem to have been doing in the past couple of years with the crime figures:

Knife crime statistics April 2011 to March 2013
Why publish a couple of years data here in 2013- where's the meaningful, accurate data? Were officials being 'economical' with the figures prior to this point? Poor or changing systems of statistical management by civil servants and politicians in the past is my educated reflection.

Knife crime statistics April 2010 to Sept 2014 (GE = General Election in 2010)

Now (above), the latest crime report shows data stretching back to 2010 - but no earlier than that published here. It begs the question... why was there so much reticence to show a clear picture of past crime data? Poor counting of crime date and too many 'leaders' with their reputations, jobs and/or salaries at risk, I suggest. I make that allegation because people have been regularly dying from stabbings and other murders and killings - and still are - as a result of 'Whitehall fiddling with figures', an apparent mis-management and lack of accurate crime information which should have always been available to the public.

It is saddening how crime figures have been poorly tracked in the past - and it has undoubtedly been a tragic lapse... fatally so. My point continues to be that without decent statistical data measuring the crime problems, it is very difficult, if not impossible, to manage solutions to crime. Without reasonable data, it is also easy for all manner of careerist politicians, civil servants and police forces to avoid responsibility for their poor activity to prevent crime, especially saving people's lives. Blood on their hands, it seems.

Does this sound unlikely? All those people paid vast amounts more salary than the majority wouldn't have made such mistakes over so many years would they? I'm not going to go into this further at this point other than state just two examples - Hillsborough and MPs expenses scandal. Huge failures there, mirrored often throughout our public service systems, it seems.

NB: I'm doing this assessment late on a Saturday evening on my own, so no-one else is working with me to check my conclusions; this is because I do this in my free time, voluntarily, in support of knife crime victims, their friends and families, and also other victims and circles adversely affected by all forms of violence. You may notice I am highly sceptical of actions of public servants paid by taxpayers to solve these problems. I believe this approach is necessary, borne out by the too frequent poor running of government.

I'm always open to offers of assistance running this blog because my spare time is not huge. Tonight isn't too bad - I'm just finishing this listening to MTV and Mark Ronson's Uptown Funk to keep me going. Onwards...

Knife crime data source for this article:

Statistical bulletin: Crime in England and Wales, Year Ending September 2014 - Crime Offences involving knives and sharp instruments (released January 2015)

How weapons sellers try to cash-in on the UK's knife crime blog

BELOW is a screenshot of someone's conscience-less attempt to promote weapons sales via this blog. I've had quite a few of these comments fairly regularly.

The red text 'Small Game Hunting Weapons' is a link to Paul Mitchell's (not a real person or name by the looks of it) airguns portal page that promotes hotels. The Paul Mitchell link is a Google account that goes to a strange spam-type Google+ page marketing loads of questionable products.

In my work as a digital consultant, at first glance this looks like an attempt to manipulate search engines via link farming-type activity; companies probably pay 'Paul Mitchell' - or whatever link building network he represents - to build artificial links for products (like weapons) to try to trick search engines, especially Google, to promote his dodgy online businesses.

Trying to make money from the victims, and campaigners against, knife crime

I may delete this attempt to cash in on knife and gun crime in due course - but aim to report it to Google first; will think on it. Reminds me of the fanatical and perverse American guns and weapons lobby and how they try to justify violence and killing. I'm highlighting this here to show the type of immoral nutters you get trying to make money via online methods from other people's misery - sickening. With some action by me and a little luck, 'Paul D Mitchell's' business will get worse.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

"Je Suis Charlie" - People against guns and knives...

IN THE AFTERMATH of the #ParisAttacks and #jesuischarlie solidarity march in the French capital, I thought it important to add a post to this peace-loving blog in a gesture of support. As a qualified and experienced journalist, 'the pen(cil) is mightier than the sword' has been a frequent motto to live by for me.

One of the most haunting of the murders this week was that of a wounded policeman - married with a family - struck prone on the pavement near the Charlie Hebdo office.

In a statement of helplessness, as Ahmed Merabet (42) lay on the ground powerless, the gunmen asked: "Do you want to kill us?". Replying "No, no chief", his killers showed no mercy, ignored his plea for life and in an act of cold blooded murder blasted him to death at point blank range. No words can convey the scale of such evil action. (Learn more about Ahmed here.)

This week the UK experienced the worst kind of violence and injustice on our doorstep not witnessed for many years; such despicable crime and inhumanity was a stone's throw away from my neighbourhood on the south of England. It could be us next; British security chiefs stated that was the case.

It feels like there is little we can do to stop this tide of idiocy from some strange kind of vipers nests, nursed in middle eastern traditions and cultures. People may see these acts as proof a God does not exist else why could such terrible events happen? Yet it is not about the existence of God but some men's choice to ignore human conscience and act as barbarians.

The Mad Jihadists are like the KKK...
KU KLUX KLAN don’t represent Christians; fundamentalist extremist murderous militants don’t represent Islam

For decent westerners and others, we must be sensible and, for our own safety, consider not offending mad men with weapons; careful, considered actions and education are more likely to prevent slaughter than ridiculing and lampooning fundamentalist extremist militants without, it seems, a moral framework.

Most of all, I recommend we become most vigilant to potential dangers around us that might be signs of an imminent attack by such terrorists, Al Qaeda, or whoever they say they are. As decent people, we can use faith for strength, hope and work for change in these mad men - and focusing on these enemies, praying their hearts can be changed. If they don't change, there is no alternative for them but to be removed from societies by all means we can muster for the self defence of decent people.