Latest crime figures in West Midlands released
New statistics show burglaries, robberies and knife crime have fallen across the West Midlands.
The reductions are revealed in the latest Office for National Statistics data on crime in England and Wales between April 2020 to the end of March 2021.
West Midlands Police data shows a 25% drop in burglaries, robberies have reduced by 21%, car crime by 21% and knife crime by 13%.
However we have seen increases in some offences. Stalking and harassment has seen a steep rise in reports over the last year of 47%.
We continue to welcome all reports of this nature and the force has taken many additional measures to encourage such reports in the last 12 months despite the pandemic.
We continue to invest in key initiatives to help victims of stalking and harassment report crime and we are working to better equip officers to deal with these reports. We know that these types of offences can impact on how safe people feel, and we are working to improve officers’ knowledge so they can identify early identification of wider patterns of this type of behaviour.
Protecting and supporting the people within our communities will always remain at the heart of what we do.
One in five crimes being domestic-related. While hate crime has also increased by 29% fuelled by online offending especially at the start of lockdown in April 2020.
We remain committed to taking action; with safeguarding vulnerable people and catching perpetrators of domestic abuse a key focus for the force. Training has also been refreshed to address safety in the home for children who are victims of abuse.
Training is also now been given to identify cases for referral or escalation for wider families of domestic abuse cases.
Deputy Chief Constable Vanessa Jardine said: "The drop in recorded knife crime is welcomed but this continues to be challenging for us as a force at a time where we have had tragic deaths of young people recently involving knives.
“Our biggest crime type is stalking and harassment offences, it’s the significant increase in these types of offences, often social media-driven, that have resulted in the rise in ‘violent crime’ offences."
DCC Jardine also commented on the rise in domestic abuse. "We know lockdown was tough on relationships and that people have been suffering domestic abuse in both physical and psychological forms.
"But we need people to know there is no need to suffer alone and the force, along with the many charities and refuges across the West Midlands, are ready, willing and able to help."
If you do not feel comfortable contacting police there are many other agencies who can offer support and advice. Visit No Excuse for Abuse for more information.
In recent months a new scheme has also been developed by the Home Office. “Ask for ANI" (Action Needed Immediately) enables victims of domestic abuse to access immediate help from the police or other support services, from the safety of their local pharmacy.
We urge anyone who is not feeling safe in their own home to seek help.