CRIME in Suffolk has fallen for the seventh consecutive year – and the number of solved crime has increased, new figures have today revealed.

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The figures, released by Suffolk Police, show there were 40,009 crimes recorded in the county from April 1, 2012 to March 31, 2013 – 5,632 fewer crimes than the same period last year.

The data also revealed almost a third – 32.5% – of all crime was solved, with 1,644 more solved crimes than last year, a total of 13,011.

Robbery offences saw a 25% decrease with 84 fewer crimes being committed in the past year.

There were also 108 fewer dwelling burglaries and 845 fewer violent assaults, while serious sexual offences decreased by 8.3% (49 fewer crimes); vehicle crime decreased by 7.4% (303 fewer crimes); criminal damage plummeted 19% (1,571 fewer crimes) and theft offences decreased by 15%, with 1,778 fewer crimes.

But drug offences increased by 7%, with 120 more crimes.

Police and Crime Commissioner Tim Passmore praised the crime reduction figures, but raised concerns over the level of under-reported crimes in Suffolk.

“I know from listening to people across Suffolk that despite this success, some crime is still under-reported and there are some concerns about the level of crime in the county,” he said.

“I will do all I can to prevent people becoming a victim of crime in the first place, but when crime occurs I want to encourage people to report it, and improve the satisfaction of victims with the police service they receive.”

He added: “A reduction in recorded crime for seven consecutive years is a tremendous achievement, which reflects the commitment and dedication of the constabulary, and I congratulate them on their performance.

“I have just published my Police and Crime Plan for the next four years which focuses on making Suffolk an even safer place in which to live, work, travel and invest.

“I believe the plan gives the constabulary a clear steer for policing in Suffolk over the coming years; so they continue to do well and improve in the areas where performance is not so strong.

“I am very optimistic for Suffolk and have every confidence in the constabulary to continue to provide us with an effective and efficient police service.”

Assistant Chief Constable Tim Newcomb said: “These figures are very encouraging and not only reflect some of the excellent policing work which is taking place in the county but would also indicate that local people are taking measures to ensure they do not become victims of crime.

“Crimes that matter the most to people, such as burglary, remain a concern for us. Under Operation Drawbridge, which is a countywide initiative, aimed at reducing the number of house burglaries across the county and increasing the number of crimes being ‘solved’ with offenders brought to justice, we will continue to target those who blight the lives of others by breaking into or entering their homes.

“However policing isn’t just about crime statistics, it is important that we remain focussed on our quality of service, ensuring that victims and witnesses we deal with on a daily basis remain satisfied with our level of service and feel confident that we have dealt with their matter, effectively with professionalism and care.”

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