The Home Office does not use the term 'serious crime'. Data are provided for the following offence categories: violence against the person, sexual offences and robbery. Data for South Yorkshire police force area are shown in Tables 1a to 1c from 1998-99 to 2008-09. Data for Sheffield Community Safety Partnership (CSP) are shown in Tables 2a to 2c. For CSPs (formerly known as CDRPs or Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnerships) data are available centrally from 2001-02 onwards. These tables have been placed in the Library.
There was a major change in police recorded crime recording practices in April 2002 that means that figures from 2002-03 are not comparable with figures prior to that year.
The introduction of the National Crime Recording Standard in April 2002 brought in a more victim-focused reporting system, where victim accounts had to be accepted unless there was credible evidence to the contrary. In its first year, this was estimated to have artificially increased recording of violence against the person by 23 per cent.
From l April 2008 there were also changes in offence classifications which for the first time collected separate information on grievous bodily harm (GBH) without intent (rather than as part of a broader 'other wounding' category) and a clarification in the counting rules for grievous bodily harm (GBH) with intent. This led to a step change in the levels of most serious violence for some police forces. This means figures for these offence categories for 2008-09 are not comparable with those for earlier years.