Friday, July 16, 2004

On Blair's doorstep

From our North East correspondent. 

In a report to the Sedgefield Crime watch panel, theire police liaison officer blithley told the members that '' Recorded crime has not increased".  According to the subsequent report, this claim was hotly disputed by members present.  
Their view was that there was evidence that not all calls are recorded or even actioned and that as a result of "Police barriers to callers" - i.e., the non-urgent line is never answered - "many members of the public have given up reporting problems to them'' 
The report also gave details of reported crimes during the past 12 months, as follows: 
Youths causing Annoyance  6
Burglary non dwelling          7
Burglary Dwelling                 2
Drugs                                    nil
Theft from Motor V               8
Theft of Motor V                    5
Taking and Driving              2
Vehicle Interference            12
Assaults    #                              1
Criminal Damage                 26
Theft                                       19
Total                                       88 
The assault, incidentally, was by a court bailiff !
But, as the panel members said, these were only the reported crimes.  As with the police everywhere, it seems the real answer to containing crime is to make it difficult or impossible for the public to report incidents.


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