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Wednesday, 30 July 2014

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Police commissioner disappointed as crime rises by 5 per cent

Crime has gone up by nearly five per cent in Cumbria after years of figures falling.

Richard Rhodes photo
Richard Rhodes

The increase in recorded offences was labelled “disappointing” by Crime Commissioner Richard Rhodes – but he stressed the county still had the second lowest number of crimes in England and Wales.

Police analysis puts more than half of the rise down to an increase in the crime category of violence without injury – when people issue verbal abuse, use threatening behaviour or carry out assaults where nobody is hurt.

The force says this is because there has been a climb in the number of domestic abuse incidents being reported – something officers have always encouraged as it is believed to be under-reported.

The total number of overall crimes in the 12 months to April was 23,986, compared to 22,931 the previous financial year. This was a rise of 4.8 per cent.

Senior crimefighting figures say the increase comes at a time when the county has over the long-term recorded a drop in crime of 13.8 per cent in the period from 2009. They flagged up successes such as a drop in antisocial behaviour, which was down by 7.4 per cent.

Mr Rhodes said: “Any increase in crime is of course disappointing.

“However, Cumbria still remains a safe place to live, work and visit with the second lowest number of crimes reported in England and Wales.”

There was a rise in crime in July which was linked to the hot summer, with burglars preying on homes where windows had been left open. Mr Rhodes said officers had made sure this had been brought under control.

Chief Constable Bernard Lawson added: “We have seen year-on-year decreases in crime which we have always expected to level out at some point. Despite the increase shown in the report, the 2013/14 figures demonstrate that we still receive the second lowest reports of crime in the whole country.”

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