Frightened Youngsters Suffer in Silence; Although There Is Concern about Rising Youth Crime, a Groundbreaking Survey Has Also Revealed That Fear of Crime Has Reached Alarming Levels among British Youngsters

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Byline: Paul Groves

A lthough there are numerous national crime surveys, the views of teenagers and other young people are often forgotten or not included in the final results.

On the eve of the publication of the latest National Crime Survey, some campaigners have once again called for UK-wide studies into the extent of crime among the younger generation. The crime-fighting charity Crimestoppers has commissioned special studies that have focused on the under-16s.

In a recent study of 1064 boys and girls aged between ten and 15 years old, 42 per cent said they were worried about crime and more than half of the victims (51 per cent) did not report the crimes committed against them to the police.

More worryingly, perhaps, 45 per cent who had fallen victim to crime do not even tell their parents -'What is particularly worrying is that half of those victims suffered in silence,' said a spokesman for Crimestoppers.

'What we have found is that the young have a cultural reluctance to be seen as a 'grass'. Some also fear retribution from those responsible. It's simply not 'cool' and a load of 'hassle' to report a crime.

'Significantly many victims felt they would report incidents if they could do so anonymously.'

The survey also found that: . 18 per cent of under-15s have been a victim of crime (22 per cent male vs 15 per cent female); . 23 per cent of these crime victims were mugged or the victims of street crime; . A staggering 16 respondents (two per cent) had been the victim of crime on more than five separate occasions; . …