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Justice Secretary pledges to tackle persistent violence

Scotland’s Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf has vowed to “root out persistent violence” after figures showed that repeat victims suffer over half of all violent crime. Mr Yousaf said that violent offending had fallen by half in the last ten years, but insisted that officials had not become complacent.

The 2018/19 Scottish Crime Survey figures showed that repeat victims suffered an average of three violent crimes, making up 59 per cent of the violent offences that took place during this period. Less than one in every 100 adults in Scotland experienced violent crime, with one in every 1,000 suffering five or more incidents.

Researchers interviewed around 5,500 people across Scotland regarding their experience of crime in an attempt to discover more about unreported incidents. Overall, violent offending has fallen over the last decade with figures for 2018-19 showing that 2.3 per cent of adults had been subjected to this type of crime. The figure for 2008-09 was 4.1 per cent. The research also showed that one in nine adults had been the victim of harassment or stalking last year.

Overall crime decreased by 16 per cent when compared with 2017-18 statistics. Mr Yousaf stated that the government will use the report’s findings as the basis for continuing to work with the police, local authorities and other agencies to identify how best to further reduce violent offending.

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