More of Northamptonshire's young people are staying out of trouble with the law than in previous years, a charity has claimed.
Arrests of children by Northamptonshire Police have fallen by 66 per cent in the last six years, according to figures published today (August 7).
Research shows the force made 885 arrests of children aged 17 and under last year, down from nearly 2,600 in 2010.
Across England and Wales, the total number of arrests has fallen by 64 per cent in six years, according to figures by the Howard League for Penal Reform.
The charity claims that the more contact a child has with the system, the more entrenched they are likely to become, which increases reoffending rates.
Frances Crook, chief executive of the Howard League for Penal Reform, said: “Northamptonshire Police should be applauded for their positive approach, and the Howard League is proud to have played its part in a transformation that will make our communities safer.
“For the sixth year running, we have seen a significant reduction in child arrests across the country. This is a tremendous achievement, and we will continue to support police forces to develop their good practice and reduce the number to an absolute minimum.
“By working together, we are ensuring that tens of thousands of children will have a brighter future and not be dragged into a downward spiral of crime and custody.”
Nationwide, there were 703 arrests of primary-age children (10- and 11-year-olds) in 2016, a reduction of 18 per cent from the previous year.
In total 87,525 children were arrested in 2016 across England and Wales, which is roughly one child every six minutes.