Crime falls by a QUARTER overall during coronavirus lockdown

Crime falls by a QUARTER overall during coronavirus lockdown but assaults on emergency workers are up by 14%, police figures reveal

  • The newly-released data from 43 police forces shows 25 per cent drop in crime 
  • There has been a 36% reduction in burglary and 30% drop in serious assault 
  • Recorded rape offences have fallen 28%, while shoplifting is down 53%
  • But assaults on emergency services workers are up 14% during the period 
  • Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19

Crime has fallen by a quarter during the coronavirus lockdown, police figures have revealed.

The provisional data from all 43 forces in England and Wales shows a 25 per cent drop in overall crime, excluding fraud, in the four weeks to May 10, compared to the same period last year.

There has been a 36 per cent reduction in police recorded burglary, a 41 per cent drop in vehicle crime, and a 30 per cent fall in serious assault and personal robbery, the figures released by the National Police Chiefs’ Council showed. 

But despite the fall in most types of crime, assaults on emergency services workers are up 14 per cent during the period amid a string of incidents where coronavirus has been used as a threat in coughing or spitting attacks.

Police speak with members of the public as they enjoy the hottest day of the year today in Edinburgh, Scotland

And police have seen a 4 per cent rise in domestic abuse incidents after fears were raised enforced isolation could see a spike in violence in the home.

Recorded rape offences have fallen 28%, while shoplifting is down 53% with many retail businesses closed.

NPCC lead for crime operations, chief constable Andy Cooke said: ‘These figures are not a surprise, as the public have largely stayed home during the lockdown period.

‘Forces use any spare capacity they have during lockdown to focus on proactively pursuing criminals, completing complex investigations and reducing violence.

‘As measures ease, we will bear down crime and do all we can to try and prevent it rising to pre-lockdown highs.

The number of 999 calls made to police forces has dropped by 23% and 101 by 25%.

Increased police and security personnel at New Street station in Birmingham, as train services increase as part of the easing of coronavirus lockdown restrictions

Currently, around 7.3% of police officers and staff are absent from work across the UK.

NPCC chair Martin Hewitt said: ‘Policing remains in a strong position and we are not wasting any of the extra capacity this crisis has brought.

‘Forces have been able to do more proactive policing and reduce backlogs in complex investigations, which will lead to justice being done for many victims, removing criminals from communities and getting ahead of crime before it happens.’ 

It comes as police ordered tourists who slept over at seaside resorts to leave. 

Visitors were seen camped out in Brighton and at various beauty spots in Devon and Cornwall, with locals blasting ‘selfish’ revellers for partying into the night and leaving rubbish strewn across roads and open spaces. 

A group of men sip on beers in Bournemouth yesterday, amid fears large crowds gathering a beauty spots could spark a second wave of infections 

Meanwhile, police in Newquay carried out ‘dawn raids’ on campervans to order those inside to go home, as closed car parks led to gridlock on the roads. 

Scenes of beaches in Brighton, Bournemouth and Durdle Door in Dorset packed with sunseekers enjoying temperatures of up to 82F sparked a backlash, with one man saying: ‘It’s madness, it’s like everyone’s forgotten about coronavirus.’ 

Richard Walden, 55, of Woolacombe, Devon, took a picture from his house showing gridlocked traffic snaking back as far as the eye could see.

‘Unbelievably selfish people started arriving at 5am and last night we had vans outside our house until 11pm. They are not just casual visitors.’

It comes as Britain announced another 363 hospital deaths from coronavirus yesterday, taking the official total to 35,704.  

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