Police get upper hand over crime statistics

CRIME has plummeted on the Tweed, according to statistics released this week. The latest data from the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research focuses on crimes reported to or detected by the NSW police force last year.

It lists figures for major crimes committed in the Tweed-Richmond area including murder, as- saults, robberies, break-and- enters, stealing, fraud and mali- cious damage to property.

Inspector Greg Carey, Crime Manager for the Tweed/Byron command, said he was pleased to hear that in the majority of cases crime had declined since 2006 and put it down to the continued efforts of police and the public.

"We appreciate the people who come forward to provide informa- tion either anonymously to Crime Stoppers or directly to us," Insp Carey said.

"We can't continue to reduce crime by ourselves; we need to work closely with the community."

For the year 2007, there were less domestic violence-related assaults, robberies, non-dwelling break-and-enters, stealing and in- cidents of malicious damage to property recorded than in the pre- vious year.

There were 65 less domestic- violence related assaults - a result --------------- --------------- Insp Carey was particularly pleased with.

"We are fairly happy with that result, as for several years we have actively engaged the public to% report incidents of domestic% violence."

He said police had been tire- lessly working in conjunction with other organisations in a bid to maximise the support provided to --------------- --------------- victims of domestic violence.

"There has been a lot of hard work by a lot of agencies.

"We have also enhanced the quality of our investigation and have seen more offenders before the courts."

Stealing from motor vehicles, retail stores, dwellings and people is also on the decline, which Insp Carey said was the result of the "excellent" police work in educat- ing the community about securing belongings at "crime hotspots", such as the beach.

--------------- --------------- "Our Target Action Group and Anti-Theft Unit do an outstanding job," he said. Only six of the crime categories showed an increase in reported in- cidents since 2006, including non-- domestic violence assaults, sexual assaults, break-and-enters to dwellings and fraud.

Insp Carey said the upwards trend in sexual assaults could be related to the large tourist popula- tion in the area.

"We have a large fluid tourist population, and it goes hand in hand with alcohol related inci- dents," he said.

"This is similar to domestic vio- lence in that victims are encour- aged to come forward and report these incidents to police."

Meanwhile, Insp Carey said 95 per cent of all frauds were motor- ists not paying for petrol.

"Police are working with petrol retailers to encourage the report- ing of thefts and the implementa- tion of extra security measures such as CCTV cameras."

Insp Carey said he wanted to en- courage people to keep reporting offences to police or Crime Stop- pers, which he said served as valuable asset to police when it came to reducing crime. "We continue to encourage the public to report crimes," he said.

"We deploy our resources based on intelligence and intelligence largely comes from members of the community."

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