15 February 2023
New Home Office figures reveal there was a record number of violent deaths in Derbyshire in the year to March 2022.
Data released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed that 17 homicides were committed in the county between April 2021 and March 2022.
The figure is more than double the previous 12 months when there were eight homicides in the Derbyshire Force area.
The homicide rate over the three-year period to the year ending March 2022 was 11.3 per million population in Derbyshire, higher than the average for England and Wales which was 10.8 per million population.
Derbyshire Police Federation chair Tony Wetton said he felt the rise was due in part to the end of coronavirus lockdown measures.
He said: “It’s very sad to see the number of homicides in Derbyshire rising but we know that crime rates in general have risen compared to the period when we were under lockdowns and Covid restrictions and there was less contact.
“Each life lost to homicide is a tragedy and each victim leaves behind family, friends and loved ones, and we’re determined to bring the rates down.
“We need to understand what’s behind the figures and to work with other services, such as education, mental health and social services and other parts of the criminal justice system to prevent violent deaths.
“And that means we need more officers to be able to work with other services, to get weapons off our streets, and to carry out stop and search when needed and appropriate.”
Nationally homicide returned to pre-pandemic levels in the year to March 2022, according to the ONS figures.
There were 696 victims in the last year, 130 more – or a 23 per cent increase – than the year ending March 2021 when government restrictions meant there was less social contact.
The ONS data also showed: