Latest crime figures show hundreds more offences across Harborough area

Police deal with an incident in Husbands Bosworth earlier this year
Police deal with an incident in Husbands Bosworth earlier this year

Crime is on the rise across the Harborough district, according to the latest police figures.

The district saw 4,205 reported offences between July 2017 and June this year.

That is a rise of 8% on the previous year, when 3,909 incidents were recorded.

Among the types of crime to see a large increase were sexual offences, which rose by more than 50 per cent.

However, despite the increase, Harborough is still well below the national average for recorded crimes. There was a rate of 46 crimes per 1,000 residents during 2017-18, well below the England and Wales average of 84.

The statistics are based on crimes reported to the police, and the Office of National Statistics urges caution in interpreting some of these figures.

Some offences go unreported while others may be more numerous due to a change in the focus of the police or greater public attention.

However the ONS believes crimes such as burglary and theft, which are generally well reported and recorded, have genuinely increased.

Joe Traynor, from the ONS Centre for Crime and Justice, said: “Over recent decades, we’ve seen continued falls in overall levels of crime but in the last year the trend has been more stable.

“We saw rises in some types of theft and in some lower-volume but higher-harm types of violence.”

Despite nationally rising, gun and knife possession offences have stayed the same in Harborough, with 18 incidents.

There were 394 residential burglaries reported in 2017-18. Due to a change in how the ONS categorises burglaries, the localised figures cannot be compared with other years.

There has been one homicide, a murder or manslaughter. There was one case of death or injury by dangerous driving.

Across England and Wales, the number of recorded homicides rose by 14%, reflecting an “upward trend” since 2014. These figures excluded people who died in terror attacks.

There was a 9% increase in offences with knives or sharp objects, leading to the highest number of incidents since March 2011, when comparable records started.

In Harborough theft, one of the most high volume crimes, increased by 3%. Drugs related offences dropped by 7%.

Criminal damage in Harborough, which includes arson and vandalising cars and houses, has gone down, from 506 incidents in 2016-17, to 488 in the latest figures.

While violence with injury, which includes assault, GBH and wounding, has risen, this could just be due to improved police recording as opposed to an increase in incidents.

Similarly sexual crime statistics are hard to judge as many more victims are now coming forward due to a series of high profile cases.

In Harborough there were 123 incidents recorded between July 2017 and June 2018, a 52% rise on the previous year, when 81 crimes were reported.

There were also 312 cases of stalking and harassment reported over the same period.