Two thirds of the country believe that crime is rising when it is doing the opposite. So why are we getting it so wrong?

Most of us get our information about crime from the popular media: television and radio news, and the newspapers. Three quarters of people get information about the criminal justice system from television or radio news, and about one half said that they get information from television documentaries, local and tabloid newspapers.

BUT: only 6 per cent of people think that their main source of news about the criminal justice system is inaccurate.

THIS MEANS: the vast majority of us trust our news sources, SO what these sources say is very important.

The fact is that sensational stories attract the most people. The most sensational stories involve the most shocking crimes (murder, rape, and any crime against children), or the most prolific or exceptional offenders. But these are only a small minority of crimes. And the amount of time and space covering crime issues continues to rise. As does our fear of crime.