The latest statistics for recorded crime have been published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), showing a mixed picture but a decrease in drug offences in South Yorkshire.
The overall level of recorded crime has increased. However, the statistics compare recorded crime for 2022 with the previous year, 2021, when the figures were impacted by the coronavirus pandemic and crime fell in some cases quite dramatically.
Commenting on the figures, South Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC), Dr Alan Billings said:. ‘It is not easy to compare a post pandemic year with a pandemic year and hard to draw many conclusions from them.
“Whilst increases of any kind make for unsettling reading, I note that this matches the national picture across England and Wales, indicating this isn’t an unusual upward trend in this area of the country.
“Drugs offences were one crime type where there was a fall. While this 2% reduction is welcome, even here we need to be cautious because it may indicate that there was less police activity rather than an actual fall.
“The area where I have most concern is firearms offences – up by 38%. This is an increase from 242 offences to 334. This is higher than the 22% increase in the Yorkshire and Humberside region and much higher than the figure for England and Wales as a whole at 13%. This is concerning and illustrates the importance of the work that the police Armed Crime Team is doing.
“Burglary sees a 6% increase, however this remains lower than the 10% rise across Yorkshire and Humber. Despite the increase in South Yorkshire, the numbers of residential burglaries are still below those seen in the same 12-month period that was not influenced by the pandemic (April 2018 to March 2019).
“Tackling crime and anti-social behaviour remains one of the key priorities in my Police and Crime Plan.”
Below are the crime types according to whether they increased or decreased in the 12 months April 2022 to March 2023 compared to April 2021 to March 2022 across South Yorkshire.
- Firearms Offences (38%) (from 242 offences to 334 offences)
- Possession of Weapons (18%)
- Robbery (17%)
- Theft (16%)
- Overall Crime (excluding fraud) (8%)
- Public Order Offences (7%)
- Residential Burglary (6%)
- Stalking and harassment (6%)
- Crimes Against Society (6%)
- Violence Against the Person (4%)
- Criminal Damage and Arson (4%)
- Knife and sharp instrument offences (4%)
- Sexual Offences (4%)
- Drug offences (-2%)
The ONS report for England and Wales can be viewed here: Crime in England and Wales: Police Force Area data tables – Office for National Statistics (ons.gov.uk)