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Crime rate drop is one of biggest in country
Updated 7:56am Thursday 1st May 2014 in News
Crime rates in Sussex have seen one of the biggest drops in the country, according to Government figures.
The number of crimes recorded by Sussex Police dropped by 10% in 2013 compared to a year earlier, according to new data compiled by the Office of National Statistics.
Sussex Police saw the second biggest drop of all forces in the country – second only to Northamptonshire Police.
The biggest drops were a 16% decrease in robberies, a 10% drop in burglaries and a 21% reduction in thefts from a person.
The only rise in crime was a 14% increase in sexual offences – but it was lower than other south east forces including Kent, where there was a 49% increase and in the Thames Valley, where reported offences rose by 32%.
In total there were more than 84,000 crimes reported to Sussex Police last year including 14,822 violent crimes against people and 45,439 thefts.
Superintendent Steve Curry said a major factor in the drop in theft from person crime was Operation Tealeaf, which targeted a specific problem in Brighton’s night-time economy in particular focusing on mobile phone thefts.
He added: “We know that sexual crime, along with domestic abuse, has been seriously under-reported in the past, but both nationally and locally, work has been going on among many agencies, including the police, to encourage victims of sexual crimes to come forward. It is a priority for policing in Sussex.
“This is probably the main factor in the rise and I believe this reflects that victims have a growing trust and confidence in reporting, rather than a significant increase in the number of crimes that are taking place.”
Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner Katy Bourne said: “Although it is good to see a reduction in recorded crime in Sussex, I am not complacent and will continue to scrutinise the figures and hold the Chief Constable to account throughout my term in office.
“I want to see a continued increase in the reporting of domestic abuse, serious sexual offences, antisocial behaviour and hate crimes as this shows that people are feeling more confident in reporting these crimes to the police.”
She added that part of the rise in the police council tax precept will be put towards investigating rape and other serious sexual offences.
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