Assault, GBH & ABH – 2023 Data

This post is a part of our guide series to support anyone who may have been assaulted in the past or has questions around the topic:

What is Assault? Definitions & Meanings
Who Commits Assault & Why?
What counts as Assault?
How to Report Assault (and Who to Report it to)
How is Assault Proven in Court?
Punishment & Sentencing for Assault
How to Heal and Recover from Assault
What Impact Does Assault Have on Victims, Families & Friends?
What Effects Does Assault Have on Wider Society?
How can Assault be Prevented?
Assault Data & Statistics
Assault Helplines, Support & Further Reading

Unfortunately assault crimes are more common than you might think and are often not an isolated incident.

It can impact a victim’s physical and mental health affecting their ability to work and having trusting relationship.

In this guide we will look at the data and statistics for the assault rates in the UK, we will discuss individuals who may be at higher risk of being assaulted than others as well as reasons why some cases go unreported.

How many women are assaulted in the UK annually?

Every year, well over 1 million women are victims of domestic violence, assault is one the many forms of conduct associated with domestic violence.

In the UK, 1 in 4 women will experience domestic abuse and 1 in 5 sexual assault during her lifetime.

The crime survey of England and Wales in the year ending 2019 estimated 20% of women had experienced some type of sexual assault since the age of 16, equivalent to an estimated 3.4 million victims.

The crime survey in 2020 estimated that 40% of women were victims of violent crime.

How many men are assaulted in the UK annually?

Approximately 695,000 male victims are victims of assault by way of domestic abuse, around 140,000 of these men experienced sexual assault.

An annual crime survey for England and Wales found a quarter of all domestic abuse crimes in 2018/19 were committed against a male victim.

Stepping back a year in 2017/18 the crime survey found that 32% of male victims of domestic abuse suffered a physical injury and 23% of women suffered a physical injury.

The crime survey in 2020 found men were more likely to be victims of violent crime than women (2% of men compared with 1.3% of women). In this same survey it was estimated that 60% of victims of violence were male.

How many children assaulted in the UK annually?

In the year ending March 2020 the crime survey for England and Wales estimated that 2.6% of children aged 10 to 15 (105,000) were a victim of violent crime.

Children were more commonly victims of violence with injury than violence without injury.

Is there any other sections of society with higher assault risks?

Sadly there are individuals in the society who are at higher risk of being assaulted because of their;

  • Race or ethnicity
  • Religion or belief
  • Disability
  • Sexual orientation
  • Gender Identity

This is sometimes referred to as ‘Hate crime’ and would mean a particular person or group of people are targeted for who they are or what the offender thinks they are. The attack is unlikely to be random and is normally personal and specially targeted.

In the year ending March 2021, there were 124,091 hate crimes recorded by the police in England and Wales; of which there were 92,052 race hate crimes, 6,377 religious hate crimes, 18,596 sexual orientation hate crimes, 9,943 disability hate crimes and 2,799 transgender hate crimes.

How many assaults go unreported?

Studies have shown that up to 60% of violent crimes go unreported, this may be for a number of reasons, including;

  • Feelings of shame
  • Embarrassment
  • Denial
  • Stereotypes
  • Fearful of potential repercussions from the perpetrator
  • Feeling that no one will believe them

How many assault cases result in a conviction and/or compensation?

The Sentencing Council Statistical Bulletin for assault offences in 2018 provides the following data;

  • Around 5,600 offenders were sentenced for Assault occasioning actual bodily harm, and two thirds of offenders were sentenced in the Crown Court
  • 2,700 offenders were sentenced for Inflicting grievous bodily harm/unlawful wounding
  • 1,100 of offenders were sentenced for Causing grievous bodily harm/wounding with intent

The CPS data summary for year end 2021 showed the conviction rate for hate crime increased slightly from 85.3% in 2019/20 to 86.7% in 2020/21.

We understand how difficult it is to see someone you know or love experiencing abuse, sometimes trying to help a victim is not easy. It’s important to remember that you are not alone and the first step that you should take is to talk to someone. No one should have to deal with abuse alone.

Here at the Criminal Injuries Helpline, we help victims of violent crime and abuse recover compensation. You may want to help the victim gain some justice, get in touch with us today to see if the victim would qualify.

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