Decrease in crime continues say police

NORTHERN Constabulary launches its Annual Public Performance Report (2010-11) to the Northern Joint Police Board tomorrow, revealing the downward trend in crime continues, with a 14.5% reduction in crime over the past 3 years.
The latest performance statistics for the Force reveal that crime in the Highlands and Islands in 2010-11 has continued to fall showing a decrease of 4% against the previous year (classes 1-5) which equates to 568 fewer victims of crime.
The detection rate for classes 1 to 5 is 62.8%, with over 91% of serious crimes against the person detected. Overall detection rates remain high at just over 84% over all classes of crime.
Vandalism is frequently raised as a concern for communities and it is pleasing to note that these crimes fell by 18.5% across the whole Force area, in line with a gradual decrease over the past few years.
Highlights also include a significant drop in anti social behaviour by 37% and a drop in Breach of the Peace offences by 8.1%. Figures also show a significant drop in those killed or injured in road traffic collisions.
Drug supply offences show a very slight increase on the previous year from 287 to 298. The Force continues an intelligence led approach in relation to targeting of higher level drug dealers which has a greater impact in disrupting criminal networks. Over 20 Organised Crime Groups have been dismantled over the past 2 years and this has helped to reduce the supply of drugs into the Highlands and Islands over this period.
Chief Constable George Graham said:"This report demonstrates that Northern Constabulary continues to make a significant contribution to towards maintaining the Highlands and Islands as a safe and welcoming place to live, work and visit. A detection rate of 62.8% across class 1-5 crimes is excellent by any standards and remains one of the highest detection rates in the UK. This sets a high standard to maintain over the coming years and it will be a challenge to us all, but one which I believe we can meet.”
The Chief Constable continued: "The proposed reduction of public spending over the next 4 years is likely to have an unprecedented impact on public services. Therefore a key priority is to ensure that the Force remains in the best possible financial position in order to continue to deliver high quality community policing.”
He added: “I would like to take this opportunity to thank police officers, police staff and partner agencies for their support in helping to progress the Force’s aims and objectives over the past year. Their commitment and professionalism has helped to maintain a service that remains visible, accessible and responsive to the needs of our communities. I would also like to formally record my appreciation for the professional support and commitment demonstrated by members of the Northern Joint Police Board, who, along with the Clerk, have made a significant contribution to the effectiveness of the policing services right across the Highlands and Islands.”
Northern Joint Police Board Convener, Norman McLeod praised Northern Constabulary's officers and staff for the excellent performance results.
He said: “The figures for the Force are a credit to the dedication and commitment of officers and police staff and reflect the high level of public support for the Force. We have yet again seen a reduction in the levels of crime and have maintained our high detection rates.”
The Northern Joint Police Board will be webcast live on the Highland Council Website.

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