Crime on the rise in North Somerset which police describe as 'disappointing'
PUBLISHED: 07:00 12 May 2017
The number of crimes committed in North Somerset has risen by more than 10 per cent in the past year, new figures have revealed, with sexual offences and assault cases seeing some of the most significant increases.
Avon and Somerset police have described the increase as ‘disappointing’ but say a change in the way crimes are reported is the main reason for the rise.
Sexual offences in the district have risen from 225 cases in 2014 to 334 last year.
As well as this, violence with injury statistics have seen a 12 per cent increase in the past year alone – rising from 1,128 to 1,283.
However, drug offences in North Somerset are steadily falling, with 397 crimes recorded last year, compared to 423 in 2015.
A spokesman for the police said the increase is being driven by improvements to crime recording practices.
Assistant Chief Constable Nikki Watson said: “Today’s figures are disappointing but not unexpected as the impact of our new crime recording system begins to make an impact and more people feel confident about reporting being a victim of crime.
“We were praised in the recent HMIC report for being good at preventing crime, antisocial behaviour and keeping people safe; investigating crime and reducing re-offending; and protecting those who are vulnerable from harm.”
The increase in crime is something Weston Central ward councillor Richard Nightingale has been keen to see addressed.
He told the Mercury: “Any instance of violent crime is completely unacceptable. It’s really important Avon and Somerset police fully understand these new statistics and take urgent steps to address them.”