Figures show that crime in Dorset continues to fall

Today, the Office of National Statistics (ONS) have released crime figures for 2014 showing that for the eighteenth year in a row, crime in Dorset continues to fall.

The Deputy Chief Constable (DCC) of Dorset Police, James Vaughan, has said in response to the ONS statistics: “We are very pleased to see that overall crime in 2014 fell by a further 3%, making this the eighteenth year in a row where we have seen an overall reduction. The continued reductions in burglary, robbery, theft and vehicle crime are also very positive signs, which acknowledges all the effort and hard work that Dorset Police and our partner agencies continue to deliver.

“While this reduction in reported crime is very welcome, it is not, however the complete picture and does not accurately reflect the full range of pressures on modern policing. Reported crime is in fact less than a quarter of the overall demand placed on officers and staff in Dorset Police and what crime statistics don’t accurately reflect, is the changing dimension and complexity of demand.”

Since 2010, Dorset Police has seen a 15% reduction in Police Officers and a 17% reduction in Police staff numbers, but in that time the Force has worked hard to achieve more. On a typical day officers will make, on average 35 arrests and issue around 15 charges and five cautions. To see more about the demand on Dorset Policing, please  see our infographic below:

the demand on Dorset Policing

The DCC continued: “In 2014, we saw a significant rise in violent crime in line with most other forces in the country, with an additional 2,079 reported cases. Nationally, all forces have seen increases in reporting of non-recent sexual offences, which signals growing confidence by victims in bringing these sensitive matters to the authorities. We are also experiencing improved confidence from the victims of domestic abuse in reporting their experience to the police and other agencies. Whilst this leads to higher levels of violent crime in our statistics, it demonstrates a positive shift in trust placed with agencies, including the police, that respond to these difficult cases.

“The Force continues to strengthen its response to child sexual exploitation and we continue to direct resources to meet a growing awareness and understanding of this complex crime that continues to affect some of the most vulnerable people in the community.

“Cybercrime remains a key issue for Dorset Police and The Police & Crime Commissioner (PCC) Our cyber-crime campaign has been very effective in raising awareness to on-line fraud, identifying theft and telephone scams, with dozens of people every week reporting attempted fraud conducted over the telephone or the internet. People are now beginning to report this nature of offending to the police, whereas previously it was reported to banks or went unreported. As traditional crimes continue to fall, this new dimension of criminality will move further into the foreground and begin to place pressure on the overall downward reported crime trend.

“The PCC has placed positive outcomes for the victims of crime as a key priority in the police and crime plan. The Force has worked hard during the past two years to drive and deliver improvement in the overall level of positive outcomes and is pleased to see the rate rising from less than 1 in 5 cases in 2012 to nearly 1 in 3 cases today, and we continue to have an ambition to further improve outcomes for victims.

“While it is clear that crime levels in Dorset remain low, their complexity and dimensions continue to change significantly, however, Dorset remains one of the safest counties in the country in which to live, work or visit.”

Issued: 16 July 2015

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