Increase in violent deaths

Dyfed Powys Police Federation chair Roger Webb says members are working tirelessly to make their communities safer after new Government figures revealed a rise in violent deaths.

Data released by the Office for National Statistics showed eight homicides were committed in the Force area between April 2021 and March 2022.

The figure is up on the previous 12 months when three homicides were committed in Dyfed Powys.

It’s the highest of all the Welsh force areas and higher than the average for Wales of 9.7 per million population, and for England and Wales which was 10.8.

Roger said: “We’re disappointed that the number of homicides in Dyfed Powys rose in the year to March 2022 but that’s partly the result of the end of Covid lockdowns and restrictions, which had restricted social interactions.

“One death to homicide is one too many and our members are working tirelessly to prevent violent deaths and to catch and convict those who commit such acts.”

Figures show a rise in violent death across the region

He continued: “If we are to drive down the numbers of incidents of violence and violent deaths, we need more officers so that we can go into our communities, build relationships, build trust which will lead to more information and intelligence.

“We need support to carry out stop and search where appropriate to take weapons off our streets, and we need support from the criminal justice system to send out a message that we won’t tolerate violence in our society.”

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:

  • The homicide rate over the three-year period to the year ending March 2022 was 39.7 per million population for the Black ethnic group, approximately four times higher than for the White ethnic group (8.9 per million population)
  • 282 homicides, approximately 4 in 10, were committed using a knife or sharp instrument, a 19 per cent increase compared with the previous year, and the highest annual total since the Home Office’s homicide index began in 1946
  • There were 69 homicide victims aged 13 to 19 years. Of these, 51 were killed by a knife or sharp instrument
  • There were 134 domestic homicides in the year ending March 2022, 18 more than the previous year, and a similar number to the average over the last decade of 129
  • Males accounted for 72 per cent of homicide victims in the latest year, but 93 per cent of convicted suspects.