Rate of arrests on children tumbles

Arrests on children have tumbled across the county
Arrests on children have tumbled across the county

The amount of child arrests in Bedfordshire has dropped to almost a third of rates five years ago, data has revealed.

The statistics, obtained under a Freedom of Information request by the Howard League for Penal Reform, show that 1,390 arrests were made on children across the county last year.

That total is 57% lower than in 2008– when 3,257 arrests were made on minors.

The drop reflected a nationwide trend, as the amount of child arrests in England and Wales has fallen by 59% over the last five years.

In 2013 police made 129,274 arrests of children aged 17 and under, including 1,107 arrests of children who were aged 10 or 11.

This meant that on average three primary school-age children were arrested every day.

Frances Crook, chief executive of the Howard League, welcomed the statistics.

She said: “It is encouraging to see that police have successfully reduced child arrests by a half since 2008.

“A sharp fall in the number of children entering the justice system is good news for everyone striving to reduce crime and saves the taxpayer untold millions.”