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Date Responded 01 May 2018

Provision of information held by Northumbria Police made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the 'Act')

As you may be aware the purpose of the Act is to allow a general right of access to information held at the time of a request, by a Public Authority (including the Police), subject to certain limitations and exemptions.

You asked:

1. I would like to know, of all the violent incidents involving a knife or sharp instrument where the victim is aged under 25 that were recorded (in the time frames below), how many: 

a)    led to arrest (one or multiple)

b)    led to charges being made (to one person or multiple people)

c)    led to no action being taken/went unsolved 

The time frames I would like this information for are 1st April to 31st March each year for: 

April 2017 – March 2018

April 2016 – March 2017

April 2015 – March 2016

April 2014 – March 2015

April 2013 – March 2014 

2. Could you also provide the overall number of violent incidents involving a knife or sharp instrument where the victim is aged under 25?

3. Could you also please provide the same breakdown but only for the incidents of murder or manslaughter caused by a knife or sharp instrument. 

We have now had the opportunity to fully consider your request and I provide a response for your attention. 

Following receipt of your request, searches were conducted with the Corporate Development Department of Northumbria Police. I can confirm that the information you have requested is held by Northumbria Police, however cannot be disclosed for the following reasons. 

The information requested at question 1a is not held in a format that allows its extraction within the permitted 18 hour threshold.  There were 841 crimes within the specified period and in order to establish if an arrest was made, each crime would have to be manually reviewed. Even at a conservative estimate of  minutes per record, which we have considered as reasonable, we have estimated that to extract this information would take over 42 hours, therefore Section 12(1) of the Freedom of Information Act would apply. This section does not oblige a public authority to comply with a request for information if the authority estimated that the cost of complying with the request would exceed the appropriate limit of 18 hours, equating to £450.00 

You should consider this to be a refusal notice under Section 17 of the Act your request. 

Although excess cost removes Northumbria Police's obligations under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, as a gesture of goodwill I have supplied information below, relative to the remainder of your request, retrieved or available before it was realised that the fees limit would be exceeded. I trust this is helpful, but it does not affect our legal right to rely on the fees regulations for the remainder of your request. 

Data has been collated through a search of all crimes created between 01/04/2013 and 31/03/2018 where the weapon attached to the crime is one that is sharp and capable of piercing the skin. Weapons included are in accordance with Home Office counting rules for Knife Crime.  

Please note that crimes are not categorised as “unsolved”,  they are given an outcome.  I have included the list of relevant crimes and the outcome for each. 

In relation to question 3, as it is unclear whether you are still referring to victims under 25 or not, I have included all crimes where the offence is either murder or manslaughter and split the response according to the victim’s age. 

With the above in mind, please find the information as attached. 

In Response:

We have now had the opportunity to fully consider your request and I provide a response for your attention. 

Following receipt of your request, searches were conducted with the Corporate Development Department of Northumbria Police. I can confirm that the information you have requested is held by Northumbria Police, however cannot be disclosed for the following reasons. 

The information requested at question 1a is not held in a format that allows its extraction within the permitted 18 hour threshold.  There were 841 crimes within the specified period and in order to establish if an arrest was made, each crime would have to be manually reviewed. Even at a conservative estimate of  minutes per record, which we have considered as reasonable, we have estimated that to extract this information would take over 42 hours, therefore Section 12(1) of the Freedom of Information Act would apply. This section does not oblige a public authority to comply with a request for information if the authority estimated that the cost of complying with the request would exceed the appropriate limit of 18 hours, equating to £450.00 

You should consider this to be a refusal notice under Section 17 of the Act your request. 

Although excess cost removes Northumbria Police's obligations under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, as a gesture of goodwill I have supplied information below, relative to the remainder of your request, retrieved or available before it was realised that the fees limit would be exceeded. I trust this is helpful, but it does not affect our legal right to rely on the fees regulations for the remainder of your request. 

Data has been collated through a search of all crimes created between 01/04/2013 and 31/03/2018 where the weapon attached to the crime is one that is sharp and capable of piercing the skin. Weapons included are in accordance with Home Office counting rules for Knife Crime.  

Please note that crimes are not categorised as “unsolved”,  they are given an outcome.  I have included the list of relevant crimes and the outcome for each. 

In relation to question 3, as it is unclear whether you are still referring to victims under 25 or not, I have included all crimes where the offence is either murder or manslaughter and split the response according to the victim’s age. 

With the above in mind, please find the information as attached. 

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