PCC Statement on Latest Crime Statistics from Office of National Statistics Pre-Covid19
Thursday 23 April, 2020
West Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner’s (PCC) statement on latest crime statistics release from Office of National Statistics (ONS) pre-Covid19.
For the first time in many months, West Yorkshire has not recorded a quarterly increase in crime, in the last quarter of 2019 from September to December.
Burglary rates continued to fall, with West Yorkshire recording a 12 per cent reduction compared to the previous December.
Recorded drug offences, however, are up 19 per cent in the same period; which is an issue that West Yorkshire Police have heavily targeted through intelligence led use of stop and search as part of the nationwide campaign against serious violence and use of weapons often linked to drugs activity. Overall, violent crime is up by 7 per cent, but most serious violence with injury has seen a reduction of 6 per cent within that.
Mark Burns-Williamson, West Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) said: “I’m encouraged by these most recent pre-Covid19 ONS crime figures in that overall crime in West Yorkshire did not see an increase during that period; even though there are categories such as violent crime and drugs offences which have seen some increases.
“There were also falls in recorded incidents of burglary, vehicle crime and robbery and I will continue to work closely with the Chief Constable and West Yorkshire Police to explore what more can be done to address these crime patterns and trends, notwithstanding the subsequent impact of Covid19 currently. However, it’s right to recognise the hard work and results being achieved by West Yorkshire Police with our partners and I thank them for that.”
“In addition a couple of months ago I launched West Yorkshire’s Violence Reduction Unit (VRU) which is now becoming established across the county. We have recently received confirmation, following a successful application, from the Home Office that further funding will be available until 2021, which will enable us to continue to better tackle and prevent serious violence from occurring.
“Working in tandem with the VRU; West Yorkshire Police’s Operation Jemlock has been in existence for over a year now and concentrates their efforts on targeted ‘surge’ activity where violent crime issues are identified. They have made over 2,000 arrests and removed many weapons since the operation began also making a positive impact in reducing harm on the streets of West Yorkshire.
“The current situation and impact of Covid19 is very challenging for the public, NHS and health workers, police and all other emergency services and volunteers. They are all working together to keep the public safe, continue to provide all essential services and protect the vulnerable. As PCC, I am responsible for ensuring vulnerable people and victims of crime have the ongoing support of the police and access to vital services they need through this pandemic, many of which are commissioned victims services through my office and key partners.
“We will get through this period by working together, supporting, helping and protecting each other. We all have a responsibility and role to play to ensure that our communities remain safe and our most vulnerable protected.”