Artillery Row

What the BBC does not say about femicide in London

Racial disparities are evident among perpetrators as well as victims

Black women in London are said to be facing a ‘crisis’,” the BBC reports, “With higher rates of femicide in the capital than other ethnic groups”:

Figures obtained by the PA News agency from the Metropolitan Police show of the 21 femicide victims recorded by the force in 2022, nine victims (43%) were black.

“Why is the value of black women’s lives so obsolete,” Selma Taha of Southall Black Sisters told the BBC, “We need politicians and the police to step up.”

Horrible statistics. Yet to understand the disparity, it seems important to ask who is doing the killing. 

Parliament Square used a MyLondon list of London’s victims of femicide from 2022 to analyse the perpetrators. In some cases, no one had been convicted. Out of the nineteen people who had been found guilty of murder or manslaughter, though, as well as one man who was killed immediately after murdering a woman, seven were black, six were white, five were of Asian heritage and one was of Arabic heritage.

A very similar disparity exists, in other words, when it comes to perpetrators as well as victims. One of those black perpetrators, Joshua Jacques, murdered three black women, as well as one black man, in a drug and alcohol fuelled rampage.

Parliament Square is not denying that there are different factors behind these statistics. One of these men was heavily schizophrenic, for example, believing himself to be “the King of Africa”, while another was a vicious domestic abuser.

Nor does Parliament Square disagree with Ms Taha that the police could have done more in some of these cases. After the victim of that domestic abuser divorced him, according to her son, the Met did not help as her ex-husband “harassed and intimidated” her.

Yet Parliament Square suspects that we are hearing about a disparity when it comes to victims of femicide, and not when it comes to perpetrators of femicide, because a discomfiting implication of the latter statistics is that the Met should be doing more to police some members of minority communities. This is the opposite argument to the one that mainstream liberals and leftists like to make. But it is the only conclusion one can draw from the BBC’s reporting — even if they preferred not to make that clear.

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