New Home Office figures were released by the Home Office on 24 January comparing Wiltshire crime figures compared to the same period in the previous year, revealing that burglaries of residential properties have reduced.
The Force continues to record a low volume of burglaries with a 10.2% per cent reduction in Wiltshire compared to the same period last year placing Wiltshire as the third lowest nationally.
Keeping a lid on crime, PCs Stephen Yeates and Tom Turner, managers of the West Swindon Neighbourhood Police Teams. Photo: Richard Wintle www.calypix.com
Wiltshire Police is also the second lowest nationally in the number of drug offences, out of the total of 43 police forces.
The statistics reveal that Wiltshire and Swindon remains a low-crime area: it is positioned tenth nationally for overall crime. During the 12-month period, the Force recorded a total of 35,935 crimes.
63.1% of Wiltshire and Swindon residents say that they agree that Wiltshire police deal with local concerns, which is above the national average.
However, vehicle crime remains high throughout the county. The Force has been running initiatives to remind motorists to keep their vehicles locked with valuables out of sight.
The figures also show an increase of 12 per cent in violence against the person compared to the same period last year. This increase was expected due to a change in the way that these crimes are recorded by Wiltshire Police.
Within this category, there is an increase in so-called “private space violence” (i.e. in the home) whereas public violence has been reduced by 6 percent due to late night economy initiatives.
In addition, looking more closely at the ‘violence against a person’ figures, Wiltshire has seen an 8.7% reduction in the most serious violent crime.
Assistant Chief Constable Steve Hedley said: “It is very positive that we have seen a reduction in the amount of residential burglaries over the last year. However, there is always work to be done and the continuing increase in car crime is a concern. We cannot stress enough to owners how small crime prevention measures can really make a difference.
“The increase in the ‘violence against persons’ category was expected as we have changed the way that we record this crime. In reality, we have seen a reduction in the most serious violence. Also Wiltshire Police continue to work hard with our partners to encourage victims of domestic abuse to have the courage to come forward and report acts of violence.”
Police and Crime Commissioner for Wiltshire and Swindon Angus Macpherson, left, commented: “I welcome these figures as the base line for my forthcoming Police and Crime Plan for the next five years.
“Wiltshire continues to be a low crime area, but there are specific measures which I will be discussing with partners and the Chief Constable.
“The figures emphasise the need for closer working with Wiltshire and Swindon councils in our joint effort to keep Wiltshire and Swindon safe both in the home and in our towns and countryside.”