Newspaper article The Chronicle (Toowoomba, Australia)

REGION'S CRIME RATE: The News Is Good and Bad; CRIME STATS: Chris Calcino Looks at the Arrests by Police on the Darling Downs over the Past Year

Newspaper article The Chronicle (Toowoomba, Australia)

REGION'S CRIME RATE: The News Is Good and Bad; CRIME STATS: Chris Calcino Looks at the Arrests by Police on the Darling Downs over the Past Year

Article excerpt

ASSAULT numbers are down on the Darling Downs but arrests for drugs have skyrocketed in the last 12 months.

The region's top cops have shed light on the past year's crime statistics before a state-wide inquiry into criminal activity.

Southern region Assistant Commissioner Tony Wright said there were 63 fewer victims of assault, 103 fewer break-ins, 22 fewer robberies and that motor vehicle theft had dropped by 20 cases.

However, there were 667 more police-detected drug arrests on the previous year a[pounds sterling] an increase of 23 per cent a[pounds sterling] along with 59 extra weapons arrests and 102 additional life-endangering traffic offences.

Police solved 912 of the 938 reported assaults, 561 of the 1850 break-and-enters and 183 of the 381 reports of vehicle theft.

The figures may sound like a lot of crimes have gone unsolved, but the successes of the Darling Downs police were above the state average across the board.

"I think this is important that people like to feel safe if they're walking the street. They want to know their home is safe and protected and also that their vehicle is where they last left it," Ass. Comm. Wright said.

Sexual offences reported to police increased by 88 cases a[pounds sterling] a worrying statistic for police.

"A lot of these relate to historical matters that have been reported some time after an offence has occurred, and could well be many, many years," he said.

"... and with the publicity that has taken place in recent times of high-profile members of the community, that has encouraged people to come forward."

The Darling Downs district currently has 365 police officers, after 13 new recruits joined the team last year.

Another 17 officers will be added to the ranks this financial year, six of whom will soon be posted at Laidley to allow the station to operate 24-hours-a-day. …

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