‘We cannot be complacent over crime figures’ amid increase

CRIME in Wiltshire rose by 10.5 percent in the 12 months to June 2022, according to new figures.
The force says the figures, released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), reflect a return to volumes close to pre-Covid levels.
Rates of residential burglary in the Wiltshire force area showed a 19.7 percent increase, which came after Wiltshire Police announced they have joined a national pledge to make personal visits to all victims of domestic burglary.

Prior to the pledge, officers were attending approximately 90 per cent of all reported residential burglaries, to meet with victims, secure potential evidence and provide vital reassurance.
Assistant Chief Constable Dave Minty said: “We fully recognise the profound impact that a burglary can have on victims and that is why we have joined the national pledge to meet every victim of these crimes.
“Your home should be your safe haven and to have somebody violate your home can have a long-lasting impact and can feel incredibly upsetting and unsettling.
“These latest figures show why it is more important than ever that we ensure our officers are attending reports of burglary at the earliest opportunity, not only to provide reassurance to victims, but to increase the chance of preserving potential evidence to support a prosecution and ensure criminals are put before the courts.”
The statistics also show a decrease in crimes where a knife has been used of six percent, but an increase in crime involving the possession of a knife of 48 per cent.
ACC Minty added: “As an organisation we will continue to work closely with our partner agencies and the Police and Crime Commissioner, to make improvements in better educating the public – in particular, young people – of the dangers of carrying a knife, and the harm they could inflict on others.”
Wiltshire Police and Crime Commissioner, Philip Wilkinson, said: “Now we have seen the first set of annual figures which don’t include a lockdown period, it is no surprise there has been
an increase in crime and, in particular, a rise in burglary,”
he said.

“Wiltshire Police cannot be complacent about this increase, as it is higher compared to similar areas across the country.
“Its commitment to visit all victims of home burglary is much welcomed to ensure we are tackling this issue head on.
“Residents need to have confidence this commitment, alongside improved investigations, better victim support and improved evidence gathering, will mean more successful prosecutions.
“Our residents deserve an effective, quality, efficient frontline service – and my role, as PCC, is to scrutinise force performance to ensure that happens.”

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