The Statistics


The number of offences involving knives or sharp objects has more than tripled over five years in some parts of Wales.
Gwent Police saw the biggest jump in the 12 months to September 2018 compared to 2013 going from 42 to 141 incidents, a 236% hike. North Wales Police was up 211% with 277 cases in 2018, while Dyfed-Powys Police cases more than doubled from 75 to 156.


In the year ending March 2019, there were around 47,100 (selected) offences involving a knife or sharp instrument recorded by police in England and Wales. This is the highest number in the nine-year series (from the year ending March 2011) the earliest point for which comparable data are available. This is directly related to improvements in recording practices. However, a review of recording practices has identified that Greater Manchester Police (GMP) had been undercounting knife crime in the area. Excluding GMP data, there were around 43,500 offences recorded in the year to March 2019 – still the highest number in the nine-year series.


In 2017/18 there were 285 homicides currently recorded using a sharp instrument, including knives and broken bottles, accounting for 39% of all homicides – an increase from the 212 recorded in 2016/17.

Knife crime by police force area

London recorded the highest rate of 169 offences involving a knife per 100,000 population in 2018/19, an increase of 1 offence per 100,000 population from 2017/18. Gwent had the lowest rate of 24 offences per 100,000 individuals (up by 5 from 2017/18).

Hospital Admissions

There were 5,149 finished consultant episodes (FCE) recorded in English hospitals in 2018/19 due to assault by a sharp object. This was an increase of 2% compared to 2017/18 and 41% higher than in 2014/15.