Petty disputes are being recorded as crime in a “completely mad way” that is scaring the public, a police chief has said.
Sir David Thompson, chief constable of the West Midlands, told The Times that verbal spats between neighbours were being registered as criminal incidents in official data submitted to the government.
Police-recorded crime in England and Wales hit a new high last week with a total of 6.5 million offences in the 12 months to June 2022, up from the previous all-time high of 6.3 million in the year to March.
But Sir David said this increase was “almost totally” down to how crime is being recorded after the Home Office decreed that all complaints from the public must be included in official statistics.
What you measure and how you measure it matters. Further, if you don;t know whay is being measured, and how, you can;t draw useful conclusions nor design reasonable policies.
Unfortunately, near all the data received by he centre – to become the feedstock of all that government planning – suffers from this problem. It’s shite, therefore so is the planning. Even before we get into the usual stuff about politics, the idiots who rise to the top in politics and all that. Even if we had sensible people becoming ministers and top bureaucrats the information in would still be shite. Therefore planning isn’t going to work.