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Ten per cent jump in crime expected for Darlington
CRIME is set to soar by more than ten per cent in a town this year, a leading police official has warned, following a sharp rise in petty thefts and anti-social behaviour.
Statistics for Darlington for the last year show a 75 per cent increase in the number of bike thefts, a 28 per cent increase in the number of break-ins at sheds and garages and a 37 per cent increase in shoplifting offences.
County Durham's police and crime commissioner, Ron Hogg, made his comments at a full meeting of Darlington Borough Council, on Thursday (September 26) evening.
He told members it was not clear why reported crime had gone up in the town.
Mr Hogg said crime in Darlington was projected to increase by ten per cent by the end of the year against 2012 figures, despite the efforts of officers in the town to tackle the issue.
Detection rates in the town stand at 33 per cent.
Mr Hogg also reported a six per cent increase in the number of house burglaries taking place in Darlington and told councillors that the force’s burglary detection rate of 18 per cent was not good enough.
He said: “That is above the national average but it still means that 82 per cent of burglaries are left undetected. The chief constable knows my feelings on that.”
Darlington has been a hotspot for bicycle thefts for some time, but Mr Hogg said he hoped the recent arrests of four people would lead to a drop in the problem.
He said: “We will continue to work very hard. I want to see a reduction in crime in the forthcoming year.
“I don’t know the cause of some of [the increase]. We’ve tried to protect the frontline. Some of it may be down to the better summer that we had.
“Crime and anti-social behaviour are both impacting on the figures.”
Figures for anti-social behaviour show that reported incidents have increased by six per cent in Darlington, following a successful campaign last year which caused the problem to drop in the town.
Mr Hogg said the data indicated that the increase was down to noisy parties and activity during the summer, rather than street disturbances.
Councillors asked him to look into incidents of ASB in rural areas, speeding issues and the policing of the night-time economy.
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