Cheshire’s police and crime commissioner, David Keane, is vowing to work very closely with the force’s acting chief constable to address an increase in recorded crime in the area.
It follows the release of figures from the Office of National Statistics which show that there has been a 36.4 per cent increase in recorded crimes across Cheshire between December 2016 and December 2017.
David said: “It is disappointing to see that there has been an increase in the amount of crimes recorded across Cheshire over the last year.
“While it is worth noting that this increase can partially be attributed to an improved crime recording process introduced by Cheshire Constabulary, there has also been an increase in some crimes that we would not expect to be significantly affected by changes to crime recording. This includes an increase in shoplifting, vehicle offences and burglary – with all three crimes also seeing an increase on a national scale.
“We have seen a surge in vehicle thefts and burglaries - particularly those linked to family gold - in certain areas across the county recently and the constabulary has committed a vast amount of resources to help catch those responsible and prevent further incidents.
“However, what I am keen to understand is if there is any link between the increase in acquisitive offences, such as shoplifting, and the impact the introduction of austerity measures, like Universal Credit, is having on society.
“My role as commissioner is to hold the acting chief constable to account on behalf of all Cheshire residents and I will be working very closely with her to understand why we’re seeing an increase in these types of offences.”
The commissioner would like to invite the acting chief constable to give a presentation at the next Scrutiny Board meeting, which will be held in public on 9 May, to help residents understand the rise in recorded crime.
“I believe that it is in the public interest for the acting chief constable to explain to the public that she serves why there has been such a sharp rise in crime.
“In the meantime, I will be undertaking a detailed scrutiny of these statistics to ensure the acting chief constable is delivering the best possible police service for our communities.”