Page last updated at 10:20 GMT, Thursday, 22 January 2009

Burglaries and knife robberies up

By Dominic Casciani
BBC News home affairs

Police officer
Eighteen forces reported increases in the category of "most serious violence"

Domestic burglaries rose 4% in England and Wales during the third quarter of 2008, official figures indicate.

The Home Office statistics show robberies with knives or sharp instruments also rose, going up by 18%.

Drugs offences rose, but total recorded crime continued to fall - dropping 3% over the three months to September.

The statistics come after the Home Office named 18 police forces involved in a miscounting row over some incidents of serious violence.

According to the British Crime Survey - a mass study of the experience of the people surveyed rather than reports to the police - the risk of being a victim of crime remained at 23%.

Within that, the level of overall violent crime was said to be stable.

But crimes recorded by the police showed significant increases in some key areas, including home break-ins, knife or sharp instrument-related violence, and drugs. The rise in burglaries was the most significant in some years.

Recorded firearms offences fell by 29% between July and September 2008.

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