Whilst any crime is too much, we’re very pleased that it’s continued to fall across the Borough. Comparing the period April 2012-Jan 2013 to the same period the year before, there were 1820 fewer victims of crime across Stockport. Although you wouldn’t always know it from reading the papers, crime levels today are lower than at any time in the ’80s, ’90s or 2000s – you have to right back to the 1970s to find a period of lower crime.
Nearly all categories of crime are down across Stockport compared to 2011/12 (and remember that crime had already been falling for several years before then).
We were pleased to see that domestic abuse is down 11.7%, and business robbery is down too.
One of only two categories to see an increase is burglaries, but even here it increased by only one, following a far bigger fall the year before. In 2011 there were 516 burglaries across the Cheadle Area (including Cheadle, Gatley, Heald Green and part of Cheadle Hulme). In 2012 that fell to 416. It might rise very slightly this year, but will be no-where near the 516 from 2011 or the even higher numbers of previous years. The other category to see a slight increase is Hate Crime with eight additional victims over the period.
A Police reorganisation will see two changes in Cheadle from next month. First, the Stockport Central neighbourhood policing area will disappear and be split between the other three, with Edgeley and Cheadle Heath coming into our Stockport West area.
Second, CID will sit with the neighbourhood police instead of having one central CID unit for the whole of Stockport. Detective Inspector Mike Griffiths will join Inspector Peter Smith in our patch.
Changes in reported crime aren’t a perfect guide. They can go down because fewer people report crime, or go up because the police work hard to get more people reporting crimes, rather than because the actual numbers of crime change. However, the Crime Survey of England and Wales gives us an important check. It asks the same questions of a large sample of people year after year and looks at their personal experiences of crime. The Crime Survey gives us strong evidence that the fall in reported crime is a real drop in crime.