Violent crime has reached a record high in Derbyshire, according to new statistics.
A total of 16, 562 incidents of violence against a person was recorded by Derbyshire police in 2018 . This number is the highest since records began in 2007.
According to the new crime figures released by The Office for National Statistics, the number of serious crimes involving knives or other sharp objects also reached its highest level since 2011.
The force said it will be carrying out new targeted patrols and knife sweeps in public places to tackle the issue.
Rachel Swann, Deputy Chief Constable at Derbyshire police, said: “In Derbyshire, we have seen an overall increase in the reporting of violent crime in 2018, compared to the year before. However, the chances of becoming a victim of knife crime or a serious assault in our county remain low. That said, a rise in crime of course concerns us as a force.
“We have been taking a proactive stance to tackle knife crime for some time now through Project Zao. This has involved working with primary and secondary schools, diversionary activities and positive engagement with young people.
“From next week we will be carrying out new targeted patrols and knife sweeps in public places.
“Last month more than 500 knives or blades were handed in as part of an amnesty run in the county, taking potentially lethal weapons off our streets.
“We’ve also been working with our partners in the local authority educating retailers on their obligations regarding underage knife sales, and carrying out test purchases and taking enforcement action where necessary.
“We are focused on this issue and will continue to take action to keep our county safe.”
Across England and Wales, knife crime increased to its highest level.
Police forces recorded 40,829 offences involving knives or sharp instruments in 2018, an increased of six per cent on the year before.
And there were 732 killings, up from 655 in 2017 - the highest since 2007.
Alexa Bradley from the Office of National Statistics Centre for Crime and Justice said: “When we look at the overall level of crime, there has been no significant change over the last year.
“However, it is important to look at each crime type separately because the picture is very mixed. Even within crime types we have seen differences.
“Robbery and vehicle offences have increased whereas burglary has decreased. Lower-volume high-harm violence involving knives has risen, whereas offences involving firearms have decreased.”
Derbyshire crime stats for 2018
- 9,390 cases involving violence that caused injury
- 4,650 cases of violence without injury
- 581 serious offences involved a knife or sharp object.
- Knife crimes included six attempted murders,11 rapes and sexual assaults.
- 356 assaults with injury or with intent to cause serious harm that involved knives or sharp objects
- 147 robberies
- 61 threats to kill
- 593 possession of weapon offences