Officers and staff at North Yorkshire Police had an extremely busy start to 2013 as alcohol-fuelled behaviour on New Year’s Eve led to the cells being full to the max.
The force had prepared for the event, with extra resources in place across the county and the City of York, to provide a visible and reassuring presence for the law-abiding majority of residents and visitors.
However, our team of officers, PCSOs and Special Constables were on hand to deal with the surprisingly high number of individuals who stepped out of line and tried to spoil the celebrations for others.
In total 83 people were arrested during this period for a variety of public order, criminal damage and violent offences.
Over the region the custody suites:
This created extra demand on the Safer Neighbourhood Teams and CID who worked around the clock to establish investigations and ensure victims and their families were supported. This often entailed visits to hospitals to help those who had been a victim of assault.
Meanwhile, the Force Control Room team responded extremely well to the increased demand in calls, further demonstrating the efficiency and effectiveness of emergency call-handling since the operation was centralised in York back in mid-2011.
Despite 999 calls increasing from 165 on 31 December 2012 to 385 on 1 January 2013, Force Control Room staff still managed to answer in an average speed of 4 and 5 seconds respectively. The national standard is 10 seconds.
Calls to the non-emergency 101 number jumped from 572 to 661 between the two days, with the respective six and 18 second average speed of answering again bettering the national standard of 30 seconds.
Tim Madgwick, Temporary Chief Constable of North Yorkshire Police, said:
Once again my officers and staff have been outstanding and risen to the challenges and demands over the festive period.
They work tirelessly around the clock to ensure our communities remain safe and secure. When people do fall victim of crime and anti-social behaviour, they are on hand to provide swift, professional and caring support.
This enduring commitment is starkly highlighted during the Christmas and New Year’s Eve period, when most people are on leave from work to spend time with their families and socialise with friends.
This, of course, is very much the way of life for members of an emergency service such as the police.
Nevertheless, I am extremely grateful and proud of the efforts of my staff to do the job to the best of their ability at any time of the year, often going beyond the call of duty to help people in need, protecting victims and bringing criminals to justice.
As we enter 2013, Mr Madgwick is satisfied to report that overall crime in North Yorkshire and the City of York has been reduced by 8.2%.
In real terms, this is 2,433 fewer victims of crime in comparison to the same April-to-December period last year. So far in the current financial year, there have been 27,388 recorded crimes.
Mr Madgwick added:
My wholehearted commitment to the people of North Yorkshire and the City of York is to lead a relentless pursuit of criminals and those who commit anti-social behaviour.
Working closely with councils and other key partners, we are using every available tool at our disposal to increase safety and security and improve the quality of life in our communities.
I again look forward to working with residents and the highly committed and valued members of the Watch schemes. Together, we are making a real difference and will continue to do so in 2013.
On behalf of North Yorkshire Police, I wish everyone a very safe and happy new year.
Police and Crime Commissioner for North Yorkshire, Julia Mulligan, thanked all officers and staff as well as other organisations for their dedication and commitment over the festive period.
She said: “Whilst we have seen a good reduction in recorded crime so far this year, I will continue to work towards these levels reducing further alongside the Chief Constable and his team.
“It is also worrying to see a spike in crime and in particular, my concern is the victims. I want to make sure their experiences are not forgotten and I am working with the police, Victim Support and other organisations to develop a local Victims’ Charter which will set out the standards of service to be expected by victims here in North Yorkshire and the City of York. It will contain a number of recommendations about what we can do here to ensure that victims receive the support they need.
“If you have been a victim of crime, please go to my website and complete the survey as it is vitally important the charter reflects the needs of victims locally.”