Police anger at alarmist claim

PUBLISHED: 06:05 13 July 2006 | UPDATED: 09:35 24 May 2010

URGENT action is being called for after latest figures revealed violent crime on Weston's streets has risen by almost 50 per cent in the last four years. The number of violent crimes rose by 43 per cent from 1,764 incidents in 2002 to 2,523 in 2005. Liber

URGENT action is being called for after latest figures revealed violent crime on Weston's streets has risen by almost 50 per cent in the last four years.The number of violent crimes rose by 43 per cent from 1,764 incidents in 2002 to 2,523 in 2005.Liberal Democrat parliamentary candidate for Weston, Mike Bell, is calling for action to be taken to cut down on the number of crimes.But police chiefs have described his figures as misleading and alarmist.North Somerset councillor Bell said: "The fight against crime and disorder is at the very top of my list of priorities for Weston and our villages."Fifty violent crimes are recorded every single week in the Weston area and all signs are that the situation is getting worse. We're seeing more assaults and drink-fuelled aggression than ever before." Despite rises in the last four years, Chief Supt Tracey Hayler said violent crime in Weston has been reduced during the last year.She said: "Mike Bell's statistics are alarmist. They have the potential to raise fear in the community of Weston."During the last 12 months, violent crime has been reduced by 10 per cent, which means there were 370 fewer victims than the year before."I'm disappointed Mike Bell has not decided to come and meet with me and I would encourage politicians to come and talk with me.

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