Monday, September 11, 2006

Another One For The Statistics Fans

As some of the comments to the previous thread show, many police officers, along with most tabloid journalists, don't really believe in anything other than prison as a punishment. The man-in-the-saloon bar will often quote wildly distorted figures about sentencing (and nobody has ever asked me "if courts have gone so soft where have all these prisoners come from?"). The latest stats I have seen are here with spreadsheets available for download that go into very great detail indeed, for anyone with the time and the inclination to find out what courts actually do, rather that what people think they do.

One quick warning - most offences cover a wide spectrum of culpability, so apparent inconsistencies usually have a reason.

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