Judith Collins has announced:
The Conviction and Sentencing Statistics, published on the Statistics New Zealand website, show 98,783 people appeared in court in 2012, down 7 per cent from 2011 and 22 per cent from 2009.
That is good. Of course it is probably due to a mixture of reduced offending, and giving out more cautions for minor offences.
The number of people charged with a violent offence has dropped 17 per cent over the last four years, after steadily increasing between 2004 and 2009.
I always tend to focus on the violent crime stats as they are the ones most likely to be reported. Other areas of crime such as drugs or traffic are somewhat dependent on how proactive the Police are. That drop in violent crime does reverse the trend increase.
74 per cent of the people charged in court are convicted, and 10 per cent of those are sent to prison. For every 10,000 people in New Zealand, 22 were sentenced to prison in 2012 compared with 25 in 2011.
Interesting stats on the 74% conviction rate. I wonder what it is for those who plead not guilty?
Along with the general reduction in youth convictions, the number of children and young people convicted in an adult court for serious offences has dropped from 500 to 199 in the last five years. Children and young people now make up less than 3 per cent of the total people charged in court in New Zealand.
“Fewer children and young people coming before our courts is an encouraging sign. We know that a key to reducing crime is to stop young people entering the court and justice system in the first place,” Ms Collins says.
That is also very welcome. Of interest will be how many offences are being committed by young people also.