Arrests of girls by Gwent Police down by one-third
10:20pm Wednesday 20th March 2013 in News
ARRESTS of girls by Gwent Police have fallen by more than a third in three years, according to figures obtained by the Howard League for Penal Reform.
Gwent officers made 357 arrests of girls aged 17 and younger during 2011, a 39 per cent drop compared to 2008, when 590 arrests were recorded.
The Howard League has launched a campaign to keep children out of the criminal justice system.
The group’s chief executive, Frances Crook, said: “It is encouraging to see that Gwent Police are making fewer arrests of girls than they were in 2008, thanks in part to our effective campaigning.
“A significant 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.”
The statistics were published following a year-long inquiry on girls conducted by the all-party parliamentary group on women in the penal system.
A spokeswoman for Gwent Police said: “Gwent Police and our partners will continue to use all methods available to them to engage and support young people, including the school liaison programme, youth offending teams and substance misuse programmes, whichever is most appropriate to the circumstances.
“However, if necessary, arrests will be made for operational reasons regardless of age or sex.”