Events in Cologne on New Year’s Eve gained international attention as mobs of migrants robbed insiscriminately and launched group sex attacks on a scale previously unseen in Europe, but they failed to make any impact on police statistics. Of the 500 attacks which were filed in detail with the police, only 17 appear in the Police Crime Statistics (PKS) — the best known and most often cited police statistics — and those that do appear are recorded for the months of April and June.
Christian Democratic Union (CDU) MP Ina Scharrenbach noticed the
discrepancy between reports of the events of New Year’s Eve and the lack
of any indication they occurred in official police data, and demanded
to know where the other reports went.
The state’s Interior Minister, Ralf Jäger, told her that reports of
crime are not recorded in the PKS until they are forwarded to the public
prosecutor and explained that “this is not always the same as the month
in which the crime was committed”.
the Social Democratic Party (SPD) minister said cases are only
submitted to the prosecutor if they are particularly serious. “The vast
majority of acts on New Year’s Eve in Cologne were criminal offenses
like pickpocketing, and insults on a sexual basis,” he said.
Scharrenberg, the CDU faction’s spokesman in the parliamentary
committee for the events of New Year’s Eve, said: “It takes my breath
away that the offences of the night were apparently not serious enough
to be detected.”
While group sex attacks have been brushed under the table in North Rhine-Westphalia, authorities in Brandenburg last month announced a new methodology was put in place to ensure that as many “right-wing crimes” as possible are recorded in police statistics.
Brandenburg Prime Minister Dietmar Woidke said the influx of migrants
to Germany seen last year had brought about a surge of such crimes. He
spoke to rbb24 about how the state has made changes to its recording
system so that this will be reflected in the data.
The SPD politician explained: “The police will count each attack, in
which there is no evidence that the perpetrator has no right wing
motivation, [as a right-wing hate crime] in the statistics.”
A police report from the German federal police (BKA) in July revealed
that across Germany on New Year’s Eve in Cologne, Stuttgart, and other
cities over 1,200 women were sexually assaulted.