Police say crime in Richmondshire is up by eight per cent

CRIME in Richmondshire has increased by eight per cent – with travelling and opportunist criminals and shop thefts creating the biggest problems for police.

North Yorkshire Police Superintendant Andy McMillan told members of a North Yorkshire County Council Richmondshire area meeting today (Wednesday, December 18) that officers had been faced with challenges across Richmondshire.

He said there had been a variety of reasons for the rise – such as people resorting to crime because of the economic climate, and to criminals crossing borders into the districts.

He said: “Crime in Richmondshire is up by eight per cent – but anti-social behaviour is down by 14 per cent.

“The crime from cross-border criminals tends to be burglaries from garages and sheds, but burglaries into homes are actually down by ten per cent.”

He added: “We have found that 25 to 30 per cent of burglaries into homes have occurred when a door or window has been left unlocked, similarly with vehicle theft, so we are reminding residents to be aware and to make sure they lock up even when they are at home.”

Superintendant McMillan said criminals had been using the A1 and A19 corridors to access the districts, but that officers had been focusing their attention on these areas and extra officers from other forces were helping to police the routes.

Richmond and Catterick Inspector Mark Gee said as well as travelling criminals he had noticed an increase in opportunist crime and shop burglaries.

He said: “My advice in the run-up to Christmas –and always – is to make sure your properties are secure and that you register your valuable items at Immobilise.com.

“It is a national website that gives your item a serial number and this helps us when we are searching for stolen goods because it is difficult to prove something is stolen without one.”

He also advised people to dispose of packaging of expensive gifts sensitively so as not to advertise property.

“Shoplifting has also been a problem – we have seen double the number of cases since April this year than the same period last year and it is mainly low-value thefts such as food and drinks," he said.

“So I would also warn shop owners to be aware.”

He added that arrests were being made and criminals are being brought to justice, with a 62 per cent resolution rate.

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