Police recorded crime figures reveal that over the past decade under the SNP Government, serious assault and attempted murder cases fell by more than half in North Ayrshire, and by 38% across Scotland.
The number of violent crimes in North Ayrshire fell from 217 in 2008/09 to 107 in 2017/18.
A separate study into the age and gender of those convicted of violent crimes over the same period highlights the reduction in the proportion of younger offenders.
Adults in Scotland, where overall crime is at a 43 year low, are less likely to be a victim of crime than those in England and Wales.
Kenneth Gibson MSP commented:
“These new figures again demonstrate how the SNP Government’s evidence-based approach to justice and rehabilitation is working for communities across North Ayrshire, thanks to the hard work of Police Scotland, Ayrshire Police and the Violence Reduction Unit.
“The fall in violent crime of course coincides with the fact that we now have 17,251 police officers in Scotland, compared to 16,265 in the second quarter of 2008.
“Meanwhile in England and Wales, the police numbers have fallen by 21,130 under successive Tory/Lib Dem Coalition and Tory Governments since 2010.
“It’s vital that we build on this progress. The SNP Government will continue investing in crime prevention initiatives, and working with Police Scotland and others to further understand and reduce violence across North Ayrshire and across the country.”
The publication Recorded Crime in Scotland: Attempted Murder and Serious Assault, 2008-09 and 2017-18 provides a broad indication of the change in characteristics of these crimes over the last decade. A further report published is Changes in the age and gender profiles of those convicted of different types of crime associated with violence between 2008-09 and 2017-18.
The SNP Government has invested £20 million in a range of violence prevention over the last decade, including the Scottish Violence Reduction Unit, Medics Against Violence, Mentors in Violence Prevention (MVP) and No Knives Better Lives.
The MVP peer-education programme, is being delivered in schools across 23 local authorities to give young people opportunities to explore and challenge attitudes, beliefs and cultural norms that underpin gender-based violence, bullying and other forms of violence.
A crime is categorised as a ‘serious assault’ where a victim needs inpatient hospital treatment for a significant injury such as a fracture, internal injury, severe concussion or permanent disfigurement.
The SNP Government abolished automatic early release for prisoners jailed for more than four years in 2015 who pose an unacceptable risk to public safety. These offenders now serve their entire sentence in custody.
In 2016 the SNP Government increased the maximum sentence for carrying a knife in 2016 from four to five years.