THE number of arrests by North Wales Police involving girls has halved in three years.
Figures obtained by the Howard League for Penal Reform revealed that North Wales officers made 557 arrests of girls aged 17 and younger during 2011 – a significant drop compared to 2008 when 1,109 arrests were recorded.
It comes after the Howard League launched a campaign aimed at keeping as many children as possible out of the criminal justice system.
Frances Crook, chief executive of the Howard League for Penal Reform, said: “Our evidence shows the police were arresting girls completely unnecessarily when they were out partying, often with the mistaken intention of protecting them.
“It is encouraging to see North Wales Police are making fewer arrests of girls than they were in 2008, thanks in part to our effective campaigning."
Across England and Wales, police arrest almost 100 girls a day, although the overall number has almost halved in three years.
Several police services in England and Wales have reviewed their arrest procedures and policies as a result of the Howard League’s engagement with them.
Last December, the Howard League published data which showed that the total number of children – boys and girls – arrested by police had fallen by a third between 2008 and 2011.
In total, more than one million child arrests have been made in England and Wales since 2008.