There are a number of factors which would suggest that crime figures are not reliTABLE or valid and distorted. Some suggest that crime figures are methodically flawed. Crime figures are either reported or recorded. I intend to show the difference as outline below. One criticism is that crime is not reported due to a number of factors. Fear of repercussion in society. LEA and YOUNG suggest that a lack of faith in Police is a reason not to report crime. Some individuals believe it to be too trivial to report. Some suggest that there is a victimless crime and indeed the dead Anton report the crime against them.
Recorded crime is criticized as it becomes a home office statistic that can be manipulated by regulations and variTABLEs in the crime recording structure. Crime priorities in various areas will distort the data. A bonus related scheme for police commanders who reduce crime may be a factor. The third criticism is one of crime recording being methodically flawed. This means that figures can be exaggerated, lied about and simply made up. Indeed, in 2000, the British Crime Survey, BCC, estimated that there are 77% more crimes than actually recorded.
In inclusion, crime figures are the subject of much debate. When a crime is reported, it is not necessarily recorded. Firstly crime may never be reported at all due to the environmental factors outlined above. A reported crime may be dealt with without the need for arrests or indeed investigations which will not appear on any statistical data. Secondly, recorded crime is open to severe manipulation by agencies and the Government. Recorded crime is suggested as the litmus test for difficulties in a particular area. Home Office regulations have tried to create uniformity with limited success.
A cynic would believe hat the figures can be “adjusted” according to the viewpoint of the individual actually recording it. Statistics are so inaccurate that we do not know if the recorded crime is on a rising trend or is it simply an increase in convictions. Yes, crime figures would be a UsefUl tool in targeting crime in a particular area and the deployment of resources to combat the causes however with the flawed system and public mistrust of Policing agencies and the courts, particularly in Northern Ireland, it is totally understandTABLE why people choose not to report or have crime recorded and therefore should be viewed with caution.