Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Police Chiefs Hail Big Fall in Crime; DROP RECORDED BY FORCE IS THE LARGEST ANYWHERE IN THE COUNTRY

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Police Chiefs Hail Big Fall in Crime; DROP RECORDED BY FORCE IS THE LARGEST ANYWHERE IN THE COUNTRY

Article excerpt

Byline: SOPHIE DOUGHTY

CRIME is falling across Tyneside, say police chiefs.

Northumbria Police today released its annual crime figures.

The force has recorded the biggest drop in crime of any police force in the whole country. The statistics show that in the last financial year there was a 15% drop in incidents across Tyne and Wear and Northumberland when compared to the previous 12 months.

Between April 1, 2009 and March 31, 2010, 89,790 offences were reported to the force.

This is a fall of almost 15% when compared to the same period in 2008/09 - when there were 105,234 - meaning there wer around 15,000 fewer victims of crime in the last 12 months.

Violent crime is down by 12% from 19,147 offences in 2008/09 to 16,855 this year while robbery fell by almost 22% from 732 to 572 offences over the past year.

There were also over 1,900 fewer burglaries in the force area last year with house burglaries alone down 21% from 4,922 to 3,876 offences.

And the last 12 months has also seen falls in car crime, fraud, criminal damage and drugs offences.

However, the number of sexual offences reported to police has gone up from 989 to 1,156 offences.

This comes in the year when Northumbria Police formed its first specialist Rape Investigation Team and teamed-up with other forces to launch a regionwide campaign encouraging victims to come forward and report attacks.

Police have also had increased success in solving the crimes reported to them.

Detection rates now stand at 40%, which is 10% higher than the national average, making Northumbria the fourth best force in the country when it comes to detecting crime.

Temporary Chief Constable Sue Sim is delighted with the figures.

"The fact we've driven down crime levels yet again is a great achievement," she said.

"Northumbria Police has a well-earned reputation as one of the best performing forces in the country. …

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