Smartphones and porn to blame for soaring sex offences by children | UK | News

January 9, 2024
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Smartphones and violent porn are linked to a rise in children committing sex offences, a police chief has said.

Half of the 106,984 child abuse cases reported in England and Wales in 2022 involved a 10 to 17-year-old as a suspect or perpetrator, up from a third in 2013.

The most common were sexual assault on a female (15%), rape of a female under 16 (12%), and taking, making or sharing indecent images.

Ian Critchley, national policing lead for child abuse protection and investigation, said it was “predominantly boys committing offences against girls”.

He added: “It’s exacerbated by violent pornography, [which is so] accessible to boys and, therefore, a perception that [it] is normalised behaviour.”

“Accessibility to smartphones has rocketed – not just in 11 to 16-year-olds, but with under-10s as well. This is a debate that does need to be had in our society.”



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