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16 April 2015, 16:59 | Updated: 16 April 2015, 20:26
The 2014/15 annual recorded crime statistics for Northamptonshire have been released.
The force figures show crime across the county has risen 12% year, between 1st April 2014 and 31st March 2015, despite the county's Crime Comissioner saying violent crime was already too high.
The total number of crimes recorded in 14/15 was 45,927, compared with 40,983 for 13/14 and 47,038 for 12/13.
Almost half of the additional crimes recorded in the last year fall within one category - violence without injury.
In total, 79% of the total increase of all crimes in the last year, are offences in which violence has been used.
All crime in the last year was 45,927 (the previous year: 40,983)
Below are some of the major crime categories broken down to type, the latest year's figures (previous year).
Assistant Chief Constable Ivan Balhatchet said:
"Although some of these statistics make for stark reading, it is important to give the context for this sudden rise in violence offences, which reflects the national picture.
The biggest rise we have seen is for violence offences without injury, whereas the level of most serious violence offences has remained relatively constant.
Last year Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) visited every force in the UK, including Northamptonshire, and undertook a crime data integrity inspection, looking at our incident and crime recording practices.
Since that inspection early last summer, we have implemented vigorous processes to ensure crimes are correctly recorded in line with the Home Office Counting Rules (HOCR) and this rise in crime is a reflection of that.
Violence figures also include incidents of domestic abuse which is an area where we want to see an increase in reporting. We know some victims never report incidents to us, and those that do often don’t report the first incidents they are victims of, so we have spent a lot of time encouraging people to report incidents to us so we can put safeguarding measures in place.
We have also seen a rise in rape and sex offences in the last year, partly because of a greater confidence in victims to report incidents but also because of an increase in the number of historic offences reported to us.
We remain committed to tackling child sexual exploitation and more resources and investment has already been made by partners across Northamptonshire. This includes the Police and Crime Commissioner’s pledge to invest £1m to help support victims of crime, including those affected by child sexual exploitation and young people affected by domestic and sexual violence."
Assistant Chief Constable Ivan Balhatchet added:
"A new strategy to develop longer-term solutions for reducing violent crime across the county is currently being developed and is due to be launched in May.
We are working with our partners on a three-year strategy to further tackle violent crime, and have consulted with more than 800 members of the public to find out their views on what police and partner agencies should prioritise and how violence should be tackled in Northamptonshire.
As part of the strategy, we want to get to root cause of the issues which lead people to commit violent offences, in order to stop the offending happening in the first place, and we are committed to working with our partners and the community to focus on reducing violent crime in the longer term."