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19 July 2012, 15:30
The latest crime figures for Suffolk and Norfolk are out and show the level of crime has gone down.
National crime figures released today confirm a dramatic fall in anti-social behaviour incidents across the county.
The quarterly report from the Home Office shows a 30% reduction in anti-social behaviour and a 2% drop in crime overall in the 12-month period between April 2011 and 2012.
With a crime rate of 49 in 1000 of the population against a national average of 72/1000, Norfolk remains one of the safest places to live in the country.
Norfolk Constabulary's focus on those crimes which cause most harm to the community is reflected in reductions in burglary (14%) and vehicle crime (13%).
The figures reflect increases in violent crime and serious sexual offences, both of which remain priority crime categories in the county. In both instances, recorded offences have seen significant reductions since April.
Deputy Chief Constable Simon Bailey said: "These figures provide a helpful benchmark and people living and visiting the county should be reassured that it remains a very safe place and crime continues on a downwards trend despite a backdrop of police budget and resource cuts.
"It is particularly pleasing to see the reduction of 30% in anti-social behaviour (ASB), against a national average of 16%. This is testament to the hard work and innovation shown by police, partners and our local communities working together.
He continued: "We recognise there is more work to be done and will continue to focus our efforts on those offences that cause most harm or are agreed policing priorities, with the aim of protecting people from becoming victims or being affected by crime."
Figures for the first quarter of 2012/13 show that crime in Suffolk has dropped by 13% compared with the previous year. The figures from 1st April 2012 – 30th June 2012 show that 10,491 crimes were recorded, a drop of 1633.
Figures reveal that robbery is down by 21%, an improvement from April’s end of year figures, which had shown an increase. Tackling robbery is a force priority, and a specialist team, dedicated to targeting those committing street robberies in Ipswich, was set up towards the end of 2011 and is proving successful.
Sexual offences reduced by 8.1%, and work continues to reduce crime in this area. Norfolk and Suffolk Police recently launched a joint campaign to raise awareness of this type of crime, with over 1000 people viewing the campaign’s short film on the subject.
Temporary Assistant Chief Constable Tim Newcomb said: “It is very pleasing to see that for the first quarter of this year, which we have entered having made substantial cuts to departments across the constabulary, crime has significantly dropped.
“We are working hard to ensure that whilst we strive to meet the large financial savings required of us, which amount to some £17.7m by 2014/15, we maintain a visible frontline policing presence and continue to keep our county safe.
“We will not become complacent however, and we recognise the huge challenge ahead of us as we continue to make savings whilst providing a first class service. We have successfully re-organised local policing to ensure we are getting the most possible from our resources, and we continue to look for new ways to improve services whilst creating efficiencies.”