Crime figures up and down – but still lower than two years ago. An overall drop in crime in Ripley Town Centre showed 5.6 per cent or 47 fewer crimes compared to 2012/13. Over in Heanor and Loscoe, the latest figures have gone the other way, with an overall increase of 3.9 per cent (33 crimes).
What I want to see is the same as you: reduced crime across the board. However, it is helpful to put these statistics into perspective. Recorded crime in Derbyshire has risen for the first time in ten years – but is still lower than two years ago when there were 15 per cent more offences reported. And that, considering the funding challenges that Derbyshire Constabulary has faced in recent years, is quite remarkable.
I believe that the rise in some types of crime is ‘poverty driven crime’ - caused by the increasing financial hardship faced by some families which is driving otherwise law-abiding people to crime.
This is not the right option and I would in no way condone it, but it is understandable and it is a sad reflection on the general economy in some areas of the county. Across Derbyshire, nearly 6,000 offences of shoplifting were recorded – more than 11 per cent of recorded crime.
Stealing has risen in Ripley Town Centre, although only by two per cent. Within the stealing category, only non-domestic burglary increased – an offence linked to the economic downturn. Over in Heanor and Loscoe, stealing rose by 10.6 per cent (41 crimes) due to increases in burglaries.
Reporting crime is often difficult for victims of domestic violence. This year, however, we have seen a rise in the number of recorded incidences, indicating that victims are more confident that they will be taken seriously and treated appropriately. That is a welcome sign that Derbyshire Constabulary and its partners are reaching people who so urgently need its support.