More violence and vandalism by girls

25/10/2004 10:00

In 2003 the police heard a total of 347 thousand crime suspects. This is the equivalent of 262 suspects per 10 thousand inhabitants in the 12-80 age bracket. Compared to 1998, when there were 208 suspects per 10 thousand inhabitants, this is a 26 percent increase. Crime remains male-dominated; almost nine out of ten suspects questioned were males. Women under 18 are catching up, however.

Suspects heard

Suspects heard

Crime mainly for boys

Police heard 97 suspects per 10 thousand inhabitants for property crimes such as theft and burglary in 2003. For violent crime the figure was 53 and for vandalism 40.

Per 10 thousand underage men 766 were heard by the police for property crimes, vandalism and violent crimes. Their relative share is highest in all crime categories. In 2003 the police heard 341 boys per 10 thousand inhabitants in the 12-17 age bracket for property crime, 260 for vandalism and 166 for violent crime.

Suspects heard by sex and crime category, 2003

Suspects heard by sex and crime category, 2003

More female crime suspects

Per capita the number of female suspects is rising faster than the number of male suspects. In the period 1998-2003 the number of adult male suspects per 10 thousand inhabitants increased from 334 to 419 (+ 25 percent), while the number of adult female suspects increased from 43 to 60 (+38 percent). The figures apply not only to property crimes, vandalism and violent crimes, but to all categories of crime, including traffic offences, drug-related crimes and illegal arms trade.

Developments among boys and girls suspected of crimes go even faster. The number of girl suspects heard by the police per 10 thousand inhabitants increased from 110 to 163 (+ 48 percent), while the figure of boy suspects went from 719 to 821 (+ 14 percent).

Female suspects aged 12-17

Female suspects aged 12-17

More violence and vandalism by girls

Young women are catching up where crime is concerned. This started around 1980, when the share of female crime suspects began to rise gradually. In 2003 it reached a record high of almost 16 percent of all young suspects. The share of girls in total youth crime has doubled since the early sixties.

The share of girls in violent crime and vandalism has actually tripled since 1960. One in five young suspects of property crime were girls in 2003, double the 1960 figure.

Harry Eggen