The latest Police statistics show crime is still dropping. Crime dropped from 1013 offences per 10,000 people in 2006 to 1008 in 2007. There was a dramatic reduction in homicides (down 10.1%, following a 10.2% drop in 2006), sex attacks were down 2.3%, and â€˜Dishonesty’ offences, including thefts and burglaries, fell 5.1%.
There is also evidence that the â€˜It’s not OK’ campaign against family violence is having an impact in getting people to report crimes that previously were kept secret. 5800 more family violence offences were reported last year than the year before. Other violent offences remained steady on a per capita basis.
More reporting of crime is a good thing, even though it inflates the crime stats. As does the addition of new offences; stronger liquor bans resulted in 2400 more offences last year than 2006. Accounting for increased reporting of crime and stronger laws to curb anti-social behaviour, the underlying crime rate has probably fallen more sharply.
The success of â€˜It’s not OK’ campaign in getting people to come forward and the addition of 1000 extra Police Officers are resulting in more arrests. Police resolved 9,500 more cases last year than in 2006 and 5,900 of those were violence offences.
This really does show how hollow all the â€˜rising crime’ rhetoric we hear is. Crime is falling. New Zealanders are safer from crime now than any period in at least the last 25 years and reporting rates are rising, meaning people are more confident to contact the Police and criminals are more likely to be caught.