A third of burglaries committed by minors, police statistics reveal

One in three residential burglaries are committed by under-18s new figures obtained by leading security firm ADT and the charity Victim Support reveal. In some police force areas as many as four out of every 10 burglaries were found to have been committed by a minor1.

The figures, released by police forces under the Freedom of Information Act for the Take No More campaign, show that nearly 100,000 break-ins in England and Wales were known to have been carried out by young people (32 per cent of the total number of burglaries identified).

Nottinghamshire, Greater Manchester and London had the highest proportion of burglaries committed by juvenile offenders, with police forces reporting under-18s involved in 43 per cent, 41 per cent and 37 per cent of break-ins respectively. In Nottinghamshire offenders under the age of 18 were responsible for 2,232 out of a total of 5,116 burglaries.

Only four police forces recorded the proportion of burglaries committed by minors as less than 15 per cent of the totaloffenders2. The police force area with the lowest percentage of burglaries by under-18s was Wiltshire, at just three per cent.

Although progress has been made on reducing the number of burglaries committed by young people in the last few years, HM Inspectorate of Probation released a report3 this year finding the rate of reoffending in 10 to 17 year olds is as high as two thirds within 12 months.

John Hayward Cripps, Director for Victim Support, said: “From supporting thousands of burglary victims every year, we know that what they want most is for no one else to suffer like they have. It’s sad that the young people committing these crimes are detrimentally affecting their peers the most. People aged 10 -16 years old are much more likely to be the victim of a crime than at any other time in their life.”

Gail Hunter, Spokesperson for ADT, said: “Through our Take No More campaign with Victim Support, we have found that some of the worst affected victims of burglary are children, yet these statistics have shown that the perpetrators of the crimes are children themselves. Our aim is to deter burglars and give householders peace of mind.”

Out of a total of 291,567 offenders identified in domestic burglaries between 2008 and 2013, 95,872 were found to be under 18.

Victim Support has joined forces with leading security company ADT to implement Take No More, a campaign to help tackle burglary. The partnership aims to highlight the significant impact that burglary has on victims and the need to focus on preventing burglary (through increased home security) and properly supporting victims.This is especially important with children and young people whose voices might not be heard.

Police forces from across the country were asked to provide the numbers of burglaries found to have been committed by an offender under the age of 18. Of the 43 police forces in England and Wales, 29 (67 per cent) responded to the request under the Freedom of Information Act. The figures obtained through the Freedom of Information request are detailed in the table below. Note that this information is not available readily in any other dataset.

1The police force areas with a percentage of burglaries committed by under 18s under 15% are Wiltshire (3%), Norfolk (9.8%), Thames Valley (13.9%) and Durham (14%).

  • Police force, Total Burglaries, Total Offenders, Offenders U-18, U-18 %
  • Avon &Somerset - 69,520 - 9,527 - 1,998 - 20.97%
  • Bedfordshire - 20,822 - 5,472 - 1,134 - 20.72%
  • Devon & Cornwall - 22,423 - 3,585 - 645 - 17.99%
  • Dorset - 10,900 - 3,021 - 642 - 21.25%
  • Durham - 11,132 - 2,922 - 410 - 14.03%
  • Gloucestershire - 33,200 - 3,892 - 862 - 22.15%
  • Gtr Manchester - 111,243 - 21,013 - 8,742 - 41.60%
  • Kent - 33,529 - 7,058 - 1,792 - 25.39%
  • Lincolnshire - 13,135 - 2,137 - 279 - 13.06%
  • Met - 362,013 - 163,652 - 60,790 - 37.15%
  • Norfolk - 9,658 - 2,290 - 224 - 9.78%
  • North Yorkshire - 10,961 - 2,424 - 449 - 18.52%
  • Northamptonshire - 20,297 - 3,391 - 1,102 - 32.50%
  • Northumbria - 22,904 - 4,341 - 827 - 19.05%
  • Nottinghamshire - 37,427 - 5,116 - 2,232 - 43.63%
  • South Yorkshire - 46,847 - 8,989 - 2,237 - 24.89%
  • Staffordshire - 20,228 - 3,518 - 698 - 19.84%
  • Thames Valley - 54,730 - 7,372 - 1,025 - 13.90%
  • Warwickshire - 12,674 - 2,171 - 404 - 18.61%
  • West Mercia - 19,070 - 4,610 - 725 - 15.73%
  • West Yorkshire - 108,024 - 21,796 - 7,933 - 36.40%
  • Wiltshire - 8,765 - 652 - 20 - 3.07%
  • North Wales - 9,399 - 2,618 - 702 - 26.81%
  • Total - 1,165,766 - 295,654 - 96,763 - 33%

2https://www.justiceinspectorates.gov.uk/hmiprobation/inspections/youthresettlementthematic/#.VQf7WY6sWSo


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