MORAY REMAINS AS one of the safest communities in which to live as instances of housebreakings and theft show a decrease over the last year.
That is the view expressed by the North East Police area commander, who has been highlighting the positive figures presented to Moray Councillors at the police and fire scrutiny committee yesterday.
Housebreakings fell by 14% with detection rates also up to 35%, while instances of common theft are down by 6% and crimes of indecency by almost 19%.
Chief Inspector Stewart Mackie commented on the figures: “Housebreaking is significantly down compared to the same period last year, and common thefts are also down which is encouraging.
“We have been working tirelessly to promote crime reduction messages and these results would indicate that this effort has been worthwhile and the messages have been heeded. When a housebreaking or theft has occurred officers have worked hard to detect the offender or offenders – and I am pleased that our detection rates for housebreakings are at their highest level of 35%, with our detection rates for common thefts at 24%.”
However, there was a marked increase of over one-third in the number of thefts from vehicles – but the chief inspector insisted the majority of these had been ‘opportunistic’ thefts from vehicles left insecure.
He said: “I would take this opportunity to remind owners to keep their vehicles locked whenever unattended and to either remove any valuables from their vehicles or keep them hidden from view.”
Another area that saw a slight increase are serious assaults, but the chief inspector said it was worth noting that the way these are counted had been changed.
He added: “Public protection is a national priority and so it’s also encouraging to see that crimes of indecency, reported rapes and domestic abuse incidents reported are all lower in this period.
“However, I would always encourage victims to come forward as these types of crimes can often by under reported.
“Drug crime continues to be a priority for us and Operation Witton was launched last month. Over the past few weeks approximately £11,500 of drugs has been recovered and 18 people have been reported or will be reported to the Procurator Fiscal.
“We are also providing support to people with addiction issues and referring them to support services. Anyone concerned about drug misuse in their community should call us on 101 with any information they have.
“Overall I am pleased with the crime figures for this period for Moray. Moray continues to be one of the safest areas to live and work in Scotland. Officers work hard in the local communities in Moray to deter and detect crime and it is down to the team that we can report these postive figures.
“As a division we will continue to work in partnership with key stakeholders and communities in order to keep residents and visitors to Moray safe.”