Published: 02/02/2013 14:59

Police officers praised as crime fall continues

Written byBY JAMES BRINDLE

STAFFORDSHIRE’S new Police and Crime Commissioner has paid tribute to the county’s police officers after new figures revealed the number of victims of crime is continuing to fall.

Matthew Ellis has promised to continue to reduce crime and the fear of it, tackle antisocial behaviour and make policing more visible, following the publication of the latest county crime figures.

There were 3,397 fewer crimes across the county and Stoke-on-Trent between April and December 2012 compared to the same period in 2011 – a reduction of almost seven per cent from 49,202 to 45,805.

This included continued reductions in serious acquisitive crime – made up of domestic buglary, vehicle crime and robbery – which fell by 1.5 per cent, or 95 offences, from 6,210 to 6,115.

Mr Ellis said: “It’s a real tribute to police officers and staff that, at a time when budgets are shrinking, crime is still falling and our county’s getting safer.

“But there’s much more work to do and I am determined to spend every pound of taxpayers’ money more effectively and efficiently.”

Staffordshire Police Chief Constable Mike Cunningham said the fall in crime was testament to the hard work of police officers, but also the likes of PCSOs and other police staff.

He said: “We’re working more closely than ever before with partner agencies to ensure local communities are safe and reassured.

“Our drive to combat serious acquisitive crime through Operation Impact has paid dividends with house burglaries alone falling by over eight per cent.

“We’re continuing to use Impact to prevent and combat burglary, car crime and robbery and would urge residents to help us help them by making life difficult for crooks and cutting out opportunities for crime.”

Violent crime with injury showed a slight rise of just 0.2 per cent, or 11 offences, and Mr Cunningham said that remains a priority.

He said: “Reducing violent crime continues to be one of Staffordshire Police’s top operational priorities in 2013.

“Our licensing teams are working with partners in all town and city centres to prevent and tackle alcohol-related violence across the area.”

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