Britain’s leading police officer, Cressida Dick, has described a fall in gun and knife crime during the coronavirus pandemic as “silver linings.” The commissioner of the Metropolitan Police declared that officers had a “smile on their face,” as a lull in activity caused by social distancing measures in response to the pandemic afforded the police more time to pursue suspects. The Met commissioner added, “With people not being on the streets, [there are] less opportunities for criminality during this period. We have seen a relief from violent crime for so many people. And clearly many criminals being inhibited in their activities.”
Falling Knife Crime Statistics
Since taking the helm at the Met in 2017, Dick’s commissionership has been marked by knife crime spiralling out of control in the capital. However, following the imposition of social distancing and lockdown measures, knife crime overall is down by twenty-five per cent.
Furthermore, stab wounds among people aged twenty-five and under have fallen by sixty-nine per cent. These statistics from London are mirrored across the country, as the nation grapples with the coronavirus pandemic. The Met commissioner has promised to adopt new tactics in order to prevent violent gun and knife crime returning to pre-lockdown levels.
Dick also added, “As the restrictions ease, we are absolutely determined to continue to bear down on violence, on violent people, to police those places where violence takes place as well as we possibly can, and to prevent an escalation of violence back anywhere near the previous levels.” Assistant commissioner, Nick Ephgrave, also added, “We want to make sure that we give those individuals an opportunity to reset their lives in a more positive way, so we are visiting every single one of those individuals twice and offering them the opportunity to engage in diversionary activities.”