Swedish teen girls 'increasingly violent'
Published: 12 Jan 2012 08:32 GMT+01:00
Updated: 12 Jan 2012 08:32 GMT+01:00
The number of Swedish teen girls accused of committing violent assaults has more than doubled in the last decade, new figures show, while the number of girls who are victims has also increased.
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Girls in Sweden also account for an ever-greater percentage of the victims of violent crime, the Dagens Nyheter (DN) daily reported.
While boys continue to be overrepresented among assault victims, Swedish girls accounted for one third of assault victims aged 15-17 in 2010, up from one fourth in 2008.
“That susceptibility to violence is increasing faster among young girls that among other groups is likely related to the fact that we've long seen that more and more young girls are also suspected of being the perpetrators of violence,” Sven Granath, a criminologist at Sweden's National Council on Crime Prevention (Brottsförebyggande rådet – Brå) told the paper.
According to figures from the council reviewed by DN, the number of girls aged 15-20 suspected of assault has increased 118.5 percent in the last decade, from 428 in 2000 to 935 reports in 2010.
In addition, the number of suspected of assaults directed at girls between 15- and 17-years-old jumped by 63 percent between 2008 and 2010.
According to Granath, it's no longer possible to overlook the increasing violence directed toward and meted out by young Swedish girls.
“For a long time, it was barely considered violence when a girl was hit and therefore wasn't reported,” he told DN.
“That violence involving women is taken seriously today is positive. A society where women are considered non-threatening isn't especially equal [from a gender perspective].”
Mathias Henriksson of the Stockholm police confirmed that girls are increasingly involved in violent crime.
“We see that when it comes to the sort of crimes previously committed primarily by guys, like assault and robbery, it's becoming more common for girls to be found guilty,” he told the paper.