Suffolk: Police are meeting majority of key targets and are solving a higher percentage of serious crimes
PUBLISHED: 13:42 12 August 2014 | UPDATED: 13:42 12 August 2014
Police chiefs in Suffolk last night welcomed new figures which revealed the force is meeting nearly all of its key targets, including solving a higher percentage of serious crimes.
Detectives achieved a better detection rate following investigations into serious sexual offences, robberies, domestic burglaries and drug trafficking in the last year than the average for the last three years, according to papers released before a Police and Crime Panel meeting tomorrow.
It showed 11 out of 14 key targets, including how police prevent crime and look after victims, were met in the 12 months to June 30.
The disclosure prompted Suffolk’s Police and Crime Commissioner Tim Passmore to hail officers’ “resilience and dedication to the cause” at a time of swingeing cutbacks.
But 999 call handling – answering emergency phone calls within 10 seconds – fell just below the 90% national standard, fewer ‘violence with injury’ crimes were solved and the repeat victimisation rate had increased.
David Skevington, Assistant Chief Constable, said the overall outcome of the findings were “very encouraging”.
He said: “The increase in domestic burglary detections, which we know remains one crime which is the greatest concern to people, reflects the excellent work being carried out in the county to target those responsible and bring them before the courts.
“999 call handling is an area of concern and one that is monitored on a daily basis. We aim to answer all 999 emergency calls within 10 seconds and we have remained consistently above the national standard of 90% for six consecutive months despite June demand increasing to the highest level of the year so far.
“Recent, more up-to-date data since the PCC’s report was written, shows that in the year to date we are exceeding the national requirement of 90%. Suffolk Constabulary consistently achieve 999 call handling times in the region of four seconds.”
Broken down, the report showed 26.8% of serious sexual offences were solved in the year to June 30, compared to a three-year average of 24.5%.
The detection rates for robberies and domestic burglaries in the same 12-month period were 36.5% and 23.3% respectively, compared to three-year averages of 31.1% and 20.1%.
Reports of anti-social behaviour are also down while victim satisfaction levels in the year to June 30 were at 87.7%, compared to a three-year average of 84.7%.
However, the solved rate of violent offences involving injuries stood at 51.2% for the year to June 30, a decrease from the three-year average of 52.5%.
Mr Skevington said: “The increase in the number of people reporting repeat domestic abuse is an area of concern for us. (But) people can have confidence in the way how Suffolk Constabulary deals with domestic abuse.
“While we want to prevent domestic abuse occurring in the first place we want to encourage those who have been or are being abused to contact us so that with our partners we can help protect vulnerable victims and their families and interrupt the cycles of abuse that individuals go through.”
Mr Passmore said: “The figures are a tribute to the work put in by staff and officers the constabulary, and their resilience and dedication to the cause they have shown even at a time of financial pressure.
“The overall message is positive. But we are not complacent and are always looking for areas where we can improve and hold the chief constable to account.”