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Saturday 21 October 2017
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A Strategic Assessment of Offending in Staffordshire

Version: KR/RF/12/1.0

Produced on behalf of Staffordshire Strategic Integrated Offender Management (IOM) Board by the Staffordshire Observatory

 

Title Strategic Assessment of Offending Behaviour in Staffordshire
Date of publication 10th June 2011
Description The purpose of this document is to provide the Staffordshire Strategic IOM Board with a profile of offenders and repeat offenders in Staffordshire to inform strategic decision making.
Produced by Susie Bentley, Assistant Principal Research & Information Officer

Staffordshire Observatory

Tel: 01785 27 7371

Email: susannah.bentley@staffordshire.gov.uk

Additional contributions Andrea Nisbet - Planning & Performance Manager, Staffordshire Young People’s Service

Mark Stoker - Performance Officer, Stoke-on-Trent Youth Offending Service

Jason Davies - Reducing Re-offending Analyst, NOMS

Kate Massey - Performance, Business and Information Officer, SWMPT

Chief Inspector Simon Tweats - Crime Manager, Chase Division

Darren Farmer - Senior Research Officer, Staffordshire Observatory

Sian Goodchild - Assistant Principal Research Officer, Staffordshire Observatory

IOM Key Contacts Heather Sutton - Head of Probation Staffordshire

Tel: 01785 231765 or email: heather.sutton@swm.probation.gsi.gov.uk

 

Chief Inspector Simon Tweats - IOM Programme Manager, Staffordshire Police

Tel: 07810 832498 or email: simon.tweats@staffordshire.pnn.police.uk

 

John Wood - Staffordshire Criminal Justice Board

Tel: 01785 238352 or email: john.wood@staffordshire.pnn.police.uk

Geographical coverage Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent
Format PDF and Publisher files
Status Version 2 (10th June 2011)
Usage statement If you wish to reproduce this document either in whole, or in part, please acknowledge the source and the author(s).
Disclaimer Staffordshire County Council, while believing the information in this publication to be correct, does not guarantee its accuracy nor does the County Council accept any liability for any direct or indirect loss or damage or other consequences, however arising from the use of such information supplied.
Protective marking

This document is not protectively marked but should only be used to help inform strategic planning and crime reduction initiatives across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent.

 

 

If you would like this information in large print, Braille, audio tape/disc, British Sign Language or any other language, please ring 01785 277371.

 


 

CONTENTS

1. Introduction

 

2. Summary of Key Findings

 

3. Trends in Re-offending in Staffordshire

 

4. Analysis of Offending in Staffordshire

4.1 Who are our current offenders?

Adult offenders on probation

Young offenders

4.2 Who are our repeat offenders?

Adult re-offending

Short-sentenced offenders

Youth re-offending

4.3 Where do offenders live?

Geography of adult offending

Geography of youth offending

4.4 How do the needs of offenders influence re-offending?

Combinations of needs contributing towards re-offending

Substance misuse

Employment, education and training

Accommodation

Mental health and emotional wellbeing

5. Which communities are home to the most ‘at risk’ groups?

 

6. Conclusions and Recommendations

 

Appendices

Appendix A - Adult offender Pathways

Appendix B - Young Offender Assets

Appendix C - Introduction of IOM in Staffordshire, initial results/findings

 


 

1. INTRODUCTION

Background

Reducing re-offending is fundamental to reducing crime in local communities and benefits everyone either directly or indirectly. Adults and young people convicted of offences are often some of the most socially excluded within society. The majority of offenders have complex and often deeprooted health and social problems, such as substance misuse, mental health problems, homelessness, high levels of unemployment, and possibly debt and financial problems. Tackling these issues is important for addressing the offender’s problems and providing ‘pathways out of offending’, and to break the inter-generational cycle of offending and associated family breakdown.1

 

Statutory changes for Community Safety Partnerships (CSPs) came into effect on 1st April 2010. These changes include a new duty for CSPs to produce and implement a reducing re-offending strategy for both adult and young offenders and Probation to formally become a responsible authority of CSPs. In addition, Section 17 of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 has been expanded to include reducing re-offending.

 

Effective from April 2010, Staffordshire Police introduced a pilot in Chase Division to bring together the management of repeat offenders into a more coherent structure, known as Integrated Offender Management (IOM). IOM is a system that provides all agencies engaged in local criminal justice partnerships with a single coherent structure for the management of repeat offenders. IOM builds on the success of other work – including the Prolific and other Priority Offender (PPO) programme, Drug Interventions Programme (DIP) and Multi-Agency Assessment Public Protection Arrangements (MAPPA) – to prevent, deter, catch and convict offenders by enhancing efforts to rehabilitate and resettle them. Following an evaluation of the pilot programme, this approach to offender management is now being rolled-out across Staffordshire.

 
Analysis of Offending Behaviour in Staffordshire

There is no ‘typical offender’ and the risks associated with offending behaviour can be very diverse with many contributory factors. However, analysis of adult and youth offenders at a strategic level has highlighted a number of common themes that can help to prioritise activity, tailor services and aid commissioning. A more informed understanding of these key groups can also be more cost effective, ensuring that resources are targeted to the individuals and areas of greatest need.

 

The aim of this assessment is to profile offenders and repeat offenders in Staffordshire, to understand their characteristics, needs, influencing factors and hotspot locations. This information can then be used to underpin the selection of offenders in relation to Staffordshire’s Integrated Offender Management programme.

 

The assessment will build on the findings of a previous report produced by Staffordshire Observatory to review the strategic approach adopted by the Chase IOM team. This included analysis of local re-offending data to ensure that the programme was ‘fit for purpose’ and responding to local need (‘Profile of Offending and Re-offending in Staffordshire’, November 2010). However, various data sets were unavailable at the time this report was produced, and therefore further analysis has been completed to understand the key characteristics of individuals most likely to offend in Staffordshire.

 


 

2. SUMMARY OF KEY FINDINGS

Although a large proportion of crime is committed by occasional offenders, much is also attributable to prolific offenders. Focusing on the varying needs of significant subsets of prolific offenders, identifying members of those subsets and devising and delivering pre-emptive services tailored to them would appear to be the most promising preventative strategy.2

 
The following characteristics highlight individuals most likely to offend:

  • males and aged 15 to 24 years old,

  • ethnicity described as White,

  • needs associated with ‘thinking and behaviour’ and ‘lifestyles and associates’,

  • substance misuse issues (both drugs and alcohol),

  • living in the most deprived areas of Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent

  • living in areas with high levels of crime.

 
Offenders most likely to re-offend are:

  • aged 18 to 25 years old

  • ethnicity described as White (adults) or BME (young people)

  • on licence (adults) or receiving a Detention Training Order (young people)

  • at least 10 previous convictions

  • needs identified in relation to drugs, finance, employment, accommodation and lifestyle

  • multiple needs (specifically seven or more out of the 10 pathways for adult offenders)

  • committing acquisitive crimes, criminal damage and breach of orders

  • living in the most deprived areas of Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent.

 
The top four risk factors, based on prevalence of need and contribution towards higher rates of reoffending are:

 
Substance misuse - 62% of adult offenders have substance misuse issues directly linked to their offending behaviour. Although there are different motivational factors associated with drugs and alcohol (drug dependent offenders are more likely to commit acquisitive crimes whereas alcohol misuse is more common amongst younger offenders committing violent crimes), many offenders have cross-cutting needs in both of these areas.

 
Employment, education and training - a fifth of adult offenders and two-fifths of young offenders have issue with their employment, education or training that is directly related to, or shows some association with their offending behaviour.

 
Accommodation - almost 17% of adult offenders have issues with their accommodation and just over half of young offenders have issues with their living arrangements that show some association with their offending behaviour.

 
Mental health and emotional wellbeing - problems with emotional wellbeing and mental health is prevalent amongst adult and young offenders. There are some strong relationships between mental health issues and certain crime types, with higher levels of need associated with offenders responsible for criminal damage, sexual offences and domestic burglary.

 
Offenders are more likely to live in:

  • Hanley, Etruria, Burslem, Bentilee and Tunstall areas of Stoke-on-Trent,

  • Tamworth, East Staffordshire, Stafford and Cannock Chase areas of Staffordshire County,

  • the most deprived areas,

  • areas with the highest levels of crime,

  • areas classified as ‘families in low-rise social housing with high levels of benefit need’ and ‘lower income workers in urban terraces in often diverse areas’.

 
Re-offenders are also most likely to live in the above areas, and specifically:

  • areas classified as ‘often indebted families living in low-rise estates’.

 
Information collated across priority risk factors each have been combined to identify the top 20 geographical areas across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent where young people are more likely to become future offenders than in other areas of the county. Eight of these neighbourhoods are within Stoke-on-Trent with the remaining 12 within Burton-on-Trent, Tamworth, Cannock, Stafford, Newcastle and Cheadle:

 
Stoke-on-Trent
• Hanley town centre
• Shelton North and Etruria
• Northwood (Hanley East)
• Burslem
• Chell Heath
• Abbey Houlton
• Bentilee (south)
• Longton

 
Staffordshire
• Town Centre/Anglesey, Burton
• Eton, Burton-on-Trent
• Rumer Hill/Cannock South
• Chadsmoor, Cannock
• Highfields, Stafford
• Penkside, Stafford
• Cross Heath, Newcastle
• Chesterton, Newcastle
• Tillington, Stafford
• North Cheadle
• Belgrave, Tamworth
• Wilnecote, Tamworth

 


 

3. TRENDS IN RE-OFFENDING IN STAFFORDSHIRE

Adult re-offending

Adult re-offending is officially measured using National Indicator 18, ‘rate of proven re-offending by adults under Probation supervision’. At the end of each quarter, a ‘snapshot’ of the probation caseload is taken. The offenders on the probation caseload at this time are then matched to the Ministry of Justice copy of the Police National Computer and tracked over a three-month period to determine whether they have committed any further offences, with a further three months allowed for convictions to be secured. The results outlined in this report combine four quarters of data to give a rolling cohort.

 
Official re-offending rates show that Staffordshire is performing significantly well when compared with both the West Midlands region and national results. The results for offenders on the cohort to December 2010 (based on a total of four cohorts) are as follows:

  • Staffordshire - re-offending rate of 6.4%. This is a difference of -17.8% from the predicted rate (of 7.8%) and is statistically significant.

  • Stoke-on-Trent - re-offending rate of 9.8%. This is a difference of -1.8% from the predicted rate (of 10%) which is no longer statistically significant.

 

Figure 1 - Trends in adult re-offending to December 2010

 

A Strategic Assessment of Offending in Staffordshire image 1.jpg

 

Rates of adult re-offending show some wide variations across the districts in Staffordshire. Latest rates at a district level (to September 2010) show the highest levels recorded in Newcastle and Cannock Chase and the lowest rate recorded in South Staffordshire. Not only does Newcastle Borough record the highest rate of re-offending in Staffordshire County, it also records a low difference from the predicted rate; just -4.6%. Staffordshire Moorlands, also in the north of the county, records the lowest difference from the predicted rate at just -2.5%, significantly lower than the differences recorded across the south of the county.

 

Figure 2 - District re-offending rates to September 2010

 

A Strategic Assessment of Offending in Staffordshire image 2.jpg

 

Youth Re-offending

Unfortunately for comparison purposes, levels of youth re-offending are measured using a different methodology to that of adult re-offending. Youth re-offending is officially measured using National Indicator 19, ‘rate of proven re-offending by young offenders’. A cohort of young offenders selected between January and March of each year is tracked for a 12 month period, with the number of reoffences calculated each quarter, resulting in a cumulative re-offending rate at the end of the year.

 
Official youth re-offending rates show that Staffordshire is under-performing when compared with both the West Midlands region and national results. The results for young offenders on the most recent cohort (January to March 2010) for the first nine months are as follows:

  • Staffordshire - a rate of 0.72 offences per young offender, equal to a re-offending rate of 31%. This is a reduction of 0.1 offences per young offender (13%) when compared with the same point in the previous year.

  • Stoke-on-Trent - a rate of 1.19 offences per young offender, equal to a re-offending rate of 43%. This is an increase of 0.3 offences per young offender (37%) when compared with the same point in the previous year.

 

Figure 3 - Trends in youth re-offending to December 2010

 

A Strategic Assessment of Offending in Staffordshire image 3.jpg

 

Overall across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent, 127 young offenders committed a re-offence (out of 364 across the two cohorts); a re-offending rate of just over a third (35%). These re-offenders committed a total of 322 repeat offences, the equivalent of 0.88 offences per young offender on the cohort.

 
Rates of youth re-offending also show some significant district variations across Staffordshire. Latest rates at a district level show the highest levels recorded in Newcastle Borough, Lichfield District and Tamworth and the lowest rate recorded in Stafford Borough. South Staffordshire recorded no repeat offences within the first nine months (however this district also recorded a very low number of offenders on the cohort; just 13). Within Newcastle Borough, half of all offenders on the cohort went on to commit another offence within nine months.

 

Latest youth re-offending rates available from the Youth Justice Board www.yjb.gov.uk/en-gb/practitioners/Monitoringperformance/YOTdata/
Latest adult re-offending rates available from the Ministry of Justice www.justice.gov.uk/publications/statistics-and-data/reoffending/local-adult-reoffending.htm

 


 

4. ANALYSIS OF OFFENDING IN STAFFORDSHIRE

Analysing the characteristics of current offenders across Staffordshire allows for the identification of patterns and trends, key groups of offenders and demand in relation to offender needs. Understanding these characteristics and issues at a strategic level will allow for a more targeted approach to the allocation of resources, service planning and commissioning across Staffordshire. It can also help to identify gaps in services and highlight trends that may affect delivery in the future.


4.1 WHO ARE OUR CURRENT OFFENDERS?

In order to produce a profile of individuals ‘most likely’ to offend, a range of data sets have been analysed. These include offenders suspected or accused of committing crime recorded by Staffordshire Police, adult offenders on the Probation caseload and young offenders managed by the Youth Offending Service.

 

 

In summary, the following characteristics highlight individuals most likely to offend:

  • males and aged 15 to 24 years old,

  • ethnicity described as ‘White’,

  • needs associated with ‘thinking and behaviour’ and ‘lifestyles and associates’,

  • substance misuse issues (both drugs and alcohol),

  • living in the most deprived areas of Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent.

  • living in areas with high levels of crime and/or anti-social behaviour.

 

Analysis of offenders recorded by Staffordshire Police who have been suspected or accused of committing a crime shows that over 80% were male, with a peak age group of between 15 and 24 years old. Males in this peak age group account for almost half of all recorded offenders (whose details were known) during the last 12 months.


1 in 5 offenders were between the age of 10 and 17 years, which is twice as high as may be expected based on the make up of the population. The overall peak is between 15 and 19 years for both male and female offenders, although the number of male offenders recorded is four-and-a-half times higher than the number of females recorded of the same age.


The peak age of offenders varies slightly by crime type, with crimes such as criminal damage, burglary and vehicle crime most likely to be committed by young offenders, whereas violent crime and drug offences are most likely to be committed by those aged above 18 years old. Males are 13 times more likely to be suspected or accused of a serious acquisitive crime (domestic burglary, vehicle crime or personal robbery) than females, and four times more likely to be suspected or accused of a violent crime, including those which are alcohol related. The smallest difference between the percentage of male and female offenders is within the category of shoplifting. Females are significantly less likely to be responsible for any type of crime, however 38% of offenders suspected or accused of committing shoplifting offences within Staffordshire are female.

 

Figure 5 - Age and gender profile of offenders committing crime in Staffordshire

 

A Strategic Assessment of Offending in Staffordshire image 5.jpg

 

Adult Offenders on Probation

During 2010/11 a total of 3,639 adult offenders in Staffordshire had an OASys3 assessment completed by Staffordshire & West Midlands Probation Trust. Approximately 3,000 offenders are on the Probation caseload at any one time; three-quarters of these in custody and the remaining quarter receiving community based outcomes. The table in figure 7 on the following page shows a breakdown of adult offenders on the Probation caseload across Staffordshire and highlights any significant differences across each of the eight districts and the city of Stoke-on-Trent.


Almost 85% of all offenders are male, however Cannock Chase has recorded a considerably higher proportion of female offenders; 19% compared with 15% across Staffordshire. Although female offenders are in the minority, it is recommended that not all resources are directly towards male offenders. Many female offenders have families and national research has highlighted the links between the offending behaviour of parents and the likelihood of their children offending in the future. Therefore initiatives targeted towards female offenders could have a wide ranging impact and help to break the cycle of offending behaviour amongst future generations.


As reflected in the general population, the majority (94%) of offenders in Staffordshire are ‘White British’. However, the percentage of BME offenders is significantly higher in East Staffordshire than across the rest of the county. Within East Staffordshire 9% of offenders were Asian or Asian British (compared with 4% of the borough population) and 4% were classified as White Other/non-British (compared with less than 1% of the population).


Over a third of all offences committed by offenders on Probation at the time this snapshot was taken were violent crimes. This figure is highest in Newcastle Borough, where 40% of offences were recorded as violence. Acquisitive crime is also a high volume category amongst offenders on Probation, accounting for 1 in 6 offences. This figure is significantly higher in Stoke-on-Trent, where a fifth of offences committed by offenders on Probation are acquisitive crimes, predominantly vehicle crimes and shoplifting. Conversely, the number of offenders committing acquisitive crimes is significantly lower in Staffordshire Moorlands, with motoring and drug offences more likely to be committed by offenders living in this district.


The majority of offenders have issues identified with their thinking and behaviour and lifestyle and associates, and almost half have problems with alcohol misuse. Further analysis of these pathways also highlights some strong correlations between certain areas of need. For example, offenders identified as having a drugs need were much more likely to have issues with financial management than other offenders. Similarly, offenders assessed as having issues with their lifestyle and associates were much more likely to have problems with attitudes. The following table shows the pathways to record the greatest correlations.

 

Figure 6 - Pathways showing the greatest levels of positive correlation

 

A Strategic Assessment of Offending in Staffordshire image 6.jpg

Endnotes

1 Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Reducing Re-offending Strategy 2010
2 Source: N. Tilley (2009) Crime Prevention