Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick has said that violent crime in London is “not on the up” despite recent high-profile incidents.
The Commissioner told a meeting of the London Assembly’s police and crime committee there had been a “very significant reduction” in the number of violent crimes since 2019.
The Assembly was told that stabbings in London are down by almost 30 per cent since 2019, while robberies are down more than 30 per cent and incidents of grievous bodily harm are down almost 20 per cent.
Cressida Dick acknowledged the “ghastly offences” that have occurred in recent weeks, but said, “overall, violent crime is not on the up”.
Ms Dick said: “We have, of course, had some horrible homicides which have received some attention in the media and quite rightly, too. There have been some stabbings of young people.
“We are working very hard to reduce those crimes as much as we possibly can and, of course, respond sensitively and effectively to them.”
The Commissioner went on to say that the Met has had “some fantastic results” in the past few weeks, having seized 43 guns between February 7 and February 18.
Ms Dick said that “the nexus between drugs and violence is where we are aiming” and revealed that more than 1,000 people have been charged with county lines drug offences since 2018, with 350 county lines closed.
However, while acknowledging the work of the Met and the Violence Reduction Unit, deputy chair of the committee Steve O’Connell said that “violence is still at an unacceptably high level despite downward trends”.
When asked whether violent crime is likely to rise again once lockdown restrictions are eased, Cressida Dick said, “I am not suggesting that we could see a rise in violence when we begin to ease some of the lockdown measures”.