Fewer than four per cent of offences investigated by police in crime-ridden area of north-east London end up in court

Robert Mendick
Question Time audience member Lena Corner, 49, who told the panel her teenage son had been mugged three times in less than a year - Geoff Pugh

Fewer than 4 per cent of offences investigated by police in a crime-ridden area of north-east London end up in court, it has been disclosed.

Statistics show that last year 1,094 crimes were investigated in Stoke Newington – an area on the Scotland Yard map that is made up of about 30 streets.

Just 45 offenders were dealt with in court in the same period, equivalent to just 3.37 per cent of the offences under investigation.

The spotlight was turned on the area, where terraced houses typically sell for £1.5 million, when this week’s episode of BBC’s Question Time was broadcast from the suburb famous for its independent shops and trendy cafés.

The panel, chaired by Fiona Bruce, entered into a discussion on crime after audience member Lena Corner, 49, told them her teenage son had been mugged three times in less than a year.

Last night the mother of three boys told The Telegraph how her son was first mugged at the age of 13 in January last year by an older gang of boys who threatened to stab him.

Ms Corner said: “It has just been terrible. It’s just that fear he lives with every day. It’s that type of fear you have in your stomach and he has got that. It’s not a good way to spend your childhood. Teenagers round here have totally changed the way they behave and socialise as a result of all these muggings.

“It’s not if you’ll get mugged but when and how many times? It’s as if now it’s an accepted part of growing up.”

Her son was mugged in broad daylight for a second time in May when he was in nearby Clissold Park and then once more in a local recreational area.

Ms Corner said the police “completely bungled” efforts to catch the person who first mugged her son.

“I don’t like criticising the police but the investigation seemed completely incompetent,” she added.

After the second incident her son, now aged 14, told his mother: “I am over these muggings. I feel fine.”

But just a week later he was attacked from behind while he sat on a swing.

“They forced him to give them his cash card Pin number and his Apple ID,” said Ms Corner.

“They were very frightening and he felt violated. They stood in front of him hacking his phone and getting all his information and that made him very upset.”

Ms Corner traced the stolen phone to an address in east London through a tracking app and informed the police.

She said officers were initially reluctant to intervene but have since made an arrest and recovered the phone.

Ms Corner is blaming cuts to policing and the number of children being excluded from schools for the crime “epidemic”.