Research and analysis

Do initiatives involving substantial increases in stop and search reduce crime? Assessing the impact of Operation BLUNT 2

This study assesses the impact on crime of the Metropolitan Police’s Operation BLUNT 2, which ran from May 2008 to April 2011.

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Do initiatives involving substantial increases in stop and search reduce crime? Assessing the impact of Operation BLUNT 2

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Details

Although there were several elements to Operation BLUNT 2, a central part was the increase in the use of weapons searches in ten priority London boroughs. The analysis compares changes in crime in those boroughs with comparison boroughs, to establish whether there was a crime-reducing effect from the surge in stop and search.

No statistically significant effects on crime were found at the borough level. However, the study could not assess whether stop and search in itself works. It is possible a base level of stop and search is effective at reducing crime, or works in highly focused locations.

Published 17 March 2016