On Thursday 15th October, the Office of National Statistics released the latest crime figures for England and Wales, with some interesting results on show. The report, based on the Crime Survey for England & Wales (CSEW) compares crime statistics taken in the 12 months between June 2014 and June 2015, in order to find out if there are any recognisable trends and patterns taking place today.

Overall, the trends were positive – compared to this time last year, instances of crime have gone down by more than 8%, with 6.5 million incidents of crime reported against households and residents aged 16 and over. This represents the lowest figure reported since the CSEW survey began in 1981.

South Yorkshire Police were happy to report that overall, trends in our area show offenses of theft have fallen in the past year with the most significant reductions to be reported in house burglaries, (which have fallen by around 10%) and burglaries in other buildings, (which fell over the past year by 15%). Thefts of bicycles and theft from a person is down, whilst recorded thefts of motor vehicles are reduced by some 11%.

However, the picture is not all rosy, as overall crime in our area has actually risen by some 3% in the last year, in large part due to a 70% rise in sexual offenses. This rise is broadly in line with developments elsewhere in England and Wales, and represents a broader national trend of sexual offenses being reported to the police in increasing numbers.

Violent crime has also risen in the past year, with statistics showing a 25% rise of violent crime and a 20% rise in public order offenses in the same period. South Yorkshire Police were keen to stress, however, that this rise in violent crime could be related to the changes that they have made in reporting and responding to violent crime in the past year.