Burglary rates in Hartlepool among highest in England and Wales

New Cleveland Police Chief Constable Richard Lewis.
New Cleveland Police Chief Constable Richard Lewis.

Hartlepool has one of the highest rates of burglary in England and Wales, with an average more than two a day in the town.

There were 784 household break-ins in 2018, data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) shows.

Police recorded crime in Hartlepool has incerased. Picture by PA

Police recorded crime in Hartlepool has incerased. Picture by PA

This means that eight out of every 1,000 people in Hartlepool reported a burglary, one of the highest rates in England and Wales.

Chief Inspector Nigel Burnell, of Cleveland Police, said: “Unoccupied properties, occupied properties, garages, sheds, allotments and garages are all logged as a burglary crime when reported to police.

“In Hartlepool we take a problem solving partnership approach to issues, including burglary and we are continuing to work closely with partners to tackle burglary.

“The community safety team is working with landlords striving to improve security and crime prevention advice is offered to the public by our dedicated team to ensure people’s properties are secure to deter burglars.

“Outside security lights, double locking doors, cutting back front hedges and locking away wheelie bins are a few tips. For further advice or help please contact the Hartlepool Community Safety Team on 01429 523100 or email community.safety@hartlepool.gov.uk.

“We would urge anyone who has been a victim of crime or anyone with information regarding crime in their local area to contact Cleveland Police on 101 or Crimestoppers.”

New Cleveland Police Chief Constable Richard Lewis said: “Burglary is one of those offences which is truly invasive.

“It is not always at home addresses but often are. It is the place where people deserve to feel safest of all and we in Cleveland Police understand the concern of communities up and down the area, Hartlepool and elsewhere, and it clearly will be a priority for us to respond where we can and take positive action, arrest and convict offenders.”

Overall, police recorded crime in Hartlepool increased in 2018 when 11,730 crimes were recorded, up 12% on 2017.

That means there is a crime for at least one in every 10 residents in Hartlepool, well above average for England and Wales.

Gun and knife possession offences in Hartlepool rose by 27 to 84 incidents.

There have been two homicides, which are murders or manslaughters.

In Hartlepool, theft, one of the most high-volume crimes, increased by 11%. Drugs-related offences rose by 20%.

Criminal damage in Hartlepool, which includes arson and vandalising cars and houses, has gone down, from 1,593 incidents in 2017, to 1,558 in the latest figures.

While violence with injury, which includes assault, GBH and wounding, has risen, this could be due to improved police recording.

Similarly sexual offences are hard to judge as many more victims are now coming forward due to a series of high-profile cases.

In Hartlepool, there were 261 incidents recorded in 2018, a 13% rise on the previous year, when 232 crimes were reported.

There were also 1,142 cases of stalking and harassment reported over the same period.

Commenting on the national figures, Chief Constable Bill Skelly, of the National Police Chiefs’ Council, said: “Rising crime, increased terrorist activity and fewer police officers have put serious strain on the policing we offer to the public.

“We are determining the additional capabilities and investment we need to drive down violence and catch more criminals – and we will make the case at the next Government Spending Review.”

Policing minister Nick Hurd said: “New statistics show that your chance of being a victim of crime remains low. Yet too many people are still falling victim to serious violence, which is why we will continue our urgent and unprecedented action to reverse this terrible trend.

“We have given police forces additional powers and have this year put more than £1billion extra into policing.”