The latest figures from the Home Office Statistical Bulletin ‘Crime in England and Wales’ has shown and overall improvement but reported crime has increases in drugs, sexual offences and fraud.
Public confidence is also on the rise in the service provided by North Yorkshire Police and partner agencies to tackle the issues that matter most to residents.
It also comes on the back of outstanding performance by North Yorkshire Police in the current financial year – since 1 April 2011 – which has seen crime drop by 7%. This equates to 2,352 fewer crimes than the same period last year.
At this point in time and for more than seven consecutive months, North Yorkshire and the City of York is the safest and lowest crime area in England.
The latest Home Office report, which is a quarterly update for 12 months up to September 2011, showed that crime had been reduced by 4% to 40,358 crimes in total.
For this period, North Yorkshire Police was in second place in England with a crime rate of 51 per 1,000 population.
Results from the British Crime Survey in the year to September 2011, showed that 62% of local people surveyed thought that North Yorkshire Police deal with local concerns. This is an improvement on 58% last year and is the highest in the Yorkshire and Humber region.
A 3% improvement was also recorded in the “Police and local council are dealing with issues” category, with the figure now standing at 57%. Again, this is the highest satisfaction level in the Yorkshire and Humber region.
The breakdown of the crime figures showed:
- Robbery reduced by 14% with 197 crimes in total
- Burglary reduced by 9% with 5,162 crimes in total. This included respective 9% drops in dwelling burglaries and burglary in a building other than a dwelling within the category
- Criminal Damage reduced by 10% with 7,178 crimes in total
- Violence against the person reduced by 2% with 7,744 crimes in total
- Offences against vehicles reduced by 11% with 3,260 crimes in total
- Other Offences reduced by 28% with 491 crimes in total
Categories that increased were:
- Sexual Offences increased 4% to 598 crimes
- Fraud and Forgery increased 13% to 1,162 crimes
- Drug Offences increased 21% to 2,229 crimes in total
It is generally accepted that a rise in sexual offence complaints reflects a growing confidence of victims in the police to handle cases sensitively and professionally.
High-profile and proactive operations to root out drug offences, particularly cannabis farms in the Selby area, account for the rise. The same applies to the successful work of the Financial Investigation Unit in respect of fraud offences.
Chief Constable Grahame Maxwell, of North Yorkshire Police, said:
The latest Home Office crime figures reflect the sheer hard work and dedication of everyone connected to North Yorkshire Police and our partner agencies, particularly during what has been a very tough period in terms of public finances and an unprecedented level of reorganisation.
This outstanding effort to reduce crime demonstrates what can be achieved by working together with clear objectives to improve the quality of life in our communities.
The continued rise in public satisfaction in North Yorkshire Police and the local authorities to tackle the issues that matter most, as outlined in the British Crime Survey, is also very pleasing. We will keep working hard to further improve satisfaction in the service we deliver.
We know from the very latest Home Office data that North Yorkshire and the City of York is the safest and lowest crime area in England, and this has been the case for more than seven months now.
We are doing everything within our power to keep it that way by applying the maximum amount of pressure on the criminal fraternity who are based within and beyond the force boundaries.
The stark message to criminals operating in our patch is that we are out there around the clock watching and waiting for you. There is nowhere to hide, one wrong move and you will be facing up to the consequences of your despicable actions.
Jane Kenyon, Chairman of the North Yorkshire Police Authority, said:
Once again, the national statistics for the year to September are very encouraging and confirm to residents of the policing area that they continue to live in one of the safest parts of the country.
These results are a testament not only to our officers and staff working in often difficult situations, but also to our partner agencies and colleagues, without whom longer term solutions to the lower level issues would not be realised.
Members regularly monitor progress against our target to reduce crime and will be receiving a full report with the most up to date statistics at the full authority meeting on 13 February 2012. We eagerly anticipate these excellent reductions to continue through the rest of this financial year.