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I am delighted that people are calling for more people to be sent to prison. I have been arguing that case for an awfully long time, and I am delighted that I seem to be getting some traction on it.
The problem with the sentencing guidelines is just the tip of the iceberg. I have asked parliamentary questions about this for a while, and have been shocked to find out that only one in seven criminals convicted of an assault on a police constable in the execution of their duty received a prison sentence at all. In the latest year shown in the figures, 7,829 assaults on police officers were recorded as being dealt with in our courts where the offender pleaded guilty or was found guilty, and yet only 1,002 of the offenders were actually sent to prison. That is completely and utterly unacceptable.
Other parliamentary questions I have asked revealed that someone with an astonishing 36 previous convictions for assaulting a police officer managed to avoid being sent to prison for a further assault on a police officer.