Violent Crime Up In Milton Keynes

Latest numbers from Thames Valley Police have revealed a big increase in violent crime in Milton Keynes.

But police say it's quite that straight forward.

"We have seen in an 18.5% increase in the number of incidents of violent crime in Milton Keynes, with the Force-wide increase being 30.3%. Part of the rise is down to new recording categories of violence without injury and harassment, and our officers are now recording these types of crime more accurately.

These make up just under 60 per cent of all violent crimes. Tackling violent crime remains a key priority for the Force.

The number of arson offences across the LPA increased by 69 compared with the previous year and we will be working with our partners in order to try to reduce this figure next year."

Overall Crime

The figures for last year (ie between 1 April 2015 and 31 March 2016) show that there were 11 fewer dwelling burglaries (representing a 1.9% fall), and 125 fewer drugs-related offences (16.8% fall), than in the previous 12-month period. In the same period, violent crime increased by 18.5 per cent (a rise of 605 offences), while robbery figures slightly decreased by six offences (3.4%).

There has also been a slight increase in the reporting of sexual offences (up by 3.8%) with rape reporting in particular rising 35.9 per cent in the past year. This increased reporting demonstrates a growing confidence in Thames Valley Police to investigate and support victims of these crimes.

Supt Gez Chiariello, LPA Commander, said:

"I am pleased that the number of burglaries continues to fall throughout Milton Keynes, but we will be working hard in order to try to drive down that figure even further over the coming year.

With hate crime and sexual offences, we have seen increases across the board, which is a positive indication that more people are reporting these categories of crime because more people are trusting us to take their reports seriously and investigate fully. Awareness campaigns such as #WeStandTogether and #ConsentIsEverything have helped to support this."

Rise in Sexual Offences

Supt Gez Chiariello added:

"We have seen a slight increase in reports of sexual offences with a 3.8% rise (an increase of 20) compared with the previous year, which is lower that the Force-wide figure of 21.4%. The reasons for this include our focus on working closely with partner agencies to continue building on the increased trust that victims have in us to deal with all reports of sexual offences, compassionately and sensitively, and victims also trust us to investigate fully and prosecute wherever possible.

We have seen in an 18.5% increase in the number of incidents of violent crime in Milton Keynes, with the Force-wide increase being 30.3%. Part of the rise is down to new recording categories of violence without injury and harassment, and our officers are now recording these types of crime more accurately. These make up just under 60 per cent of all violent crimes. Tackling violent crime remains a key priority for the Force.

The number of arson offences across the LPA increased by 69 compared with the previous year and we will be working with our partners in order to try to reduce this figure next year."

Overall Crime Is Up

The number of crimes overall in Milton Keynes increased by 3.3% (589 more offences), which is lower than the Force-wide increase of 7.2% which is in line with national figures of a general upward trend of crime recording. The overall number of crimes in the LPA increased from 18,122 in 2014/15, to 18,711 in 2015/16.

Supt Chiariello added:

"Milton Keynes is one of the fastest-growing cities in the UK and presents new policing challenges every year, and Thames Valley Police is one of only five forces across the country to be rated 'good' across the board by HMIC'.

We are getting better at accurately recording crime and we are seeing increasing levels of public confidence in reporting crimes to our officers. This is helping to see a rise in the number of crimes overall recorded compared with the previous year, although the increase in Milton Keynes was lower than the Force-wide and national increases."

Colin Wilderspin, Head of Community Safety at Milton Keynes Council, said:

"The reductions are a clear example of what can be achieved working alongside both the police and our communities.  The areas that have an increase in reporting demonstrate the new confidence in areas that, historically, have been difficult to encourage people to report crimes.

The figures are encouraging in many ways but also demonstrate the need to ensure that we continue to work in partnership to reduce the crimes that are of most concern to the public, and to reduce the fear of crime in Milton Keynes."

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