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Big fall in Norwich crime rates

PUBLISHED: 16:30 08 April 2010 | UPDATED: 09:31 02 July 2010

Ben Kendall

Almost 2,000 fewer crimes were committed in Norwich during the past year as police recorded significant reductions in burglaries, violent offences and anti-social behaviour.

Almost 2,000 fewer crimes were committed in Norwich during the past year as police recorded significant reductions in burglaries, violent offences and anti-social behaviour.

Officers today said that there had been a 12pc fall in crime - 1,900 fewer offences - across the Norwich district, compared with the previous 12 months. In the city centre area crime fell by 7pc - or 300 offences.

Although crime has fallen steadily in the city over the years, this is the most significant decrease in recent times. Reductions were recorded in all categories with robbery and vehicle crime also dropping.

Supt Nick Dean, who is in charge of policing in Norwich, said: “This is a substantial decrease. We're proud of what we've achieved, but we're not going to rest on our laurels and will keep pushing for a further decrease.

“There are a number of reasons for this success. One is that our officers have adopted a problem-solving approach to tackle specific issues. We have also worked closely with partners to come up with long-term solutions.

“But perhaps most of all we have to thank the co-operation of the public for the information and intelligence they provide. Hopefully recent events - such as drugs raids on suspicious properties - show how much we value that information. Sometimes we cannot act on it immediately, but we will always explore all possible avenues.”

Latest figures show that during the last three months:

Burglaries fell by 12.5pc compared to the last period last year.

Violent crime fell by 14.6pc across Norwich and by more than 30pc in city centre areas including Prince of Wales Road.

Robberies fell by 19pc, vehicle crime by 4pc and anti-social behaviour by 19pc.

Insp Ross McDermott, who has recently taken charge of the city centre safer neighbourhood team, said that the problems of shoplifting and anti-social behaviour remained issues in Norwich.

He also said that officers were working closely with licensees and door staff to ensure the city's nightclub district - particularly Prince of Wales Roads - was as safe as possible.

Commenting on the fall in crime, he said: “We believe it shows that our hard work is starting to pay off and hopefully people feel safer in their own community.

“One reason for this is that we have built up strong profiles of persistent offenders and crime hotspots and adopted a problem solving approach - that could be using restorative justice to steer somebody away from crime or something more simple such as looking at street lighting in an area.

“We are also able to identify repeat victims and look at ways we can help them from being targeted.”

Norfolk is currently rated as the safest place to live in England. Compared to the rest of the county, crime rates in Norwich are high, but on a national level the city is rated as average.

Do you have a crime story for the Evening News? Contact crime correspondent Ben Kendall on 01603 772423 or email ben.kendall@archant.co.uk

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