Latest figures show crime rise in Hartlepool – with violent offences up by 28%

Hartlepool Police Station.
Hartlepool Police Station.

Crime in Hartlepool has risen by more than 11% in a year – with violent offences seeing a 28% increase.

Figures revealed by the Safer Hartlepool Partnership also show a 20% increase in shoplifting incidents, with sexual offences up by 40%.

Cleveland Police temporary assistant chief constable Ciaron Irvine.

Cleveland Police temporary assistant chief constable Ciaron Irvine.

The numbers were looked at as part of an overview of the partnership’s performance in 2015-16.

The partnership, which is made up of bodies including Hartlepool Borough Council, Cleveland Police, Cleveland Fire Brigade and health organisations, aims to reduce crime and the fear of crime across Hartlepool.

However, while some figures – such as anti-social behaviour, domestic burglary and vehicle crime – saw a fall, the partnership failed to meet its year-on-year target in other areas.

The amount of crimes recorded in the 2015-16 period rose from 7,308 in 2014-15 to 8,133 – a jump of 11.3%.

Crime reduction and making Hartlepool a safer place to live work and visit remains a top priority for the partnership

Safer Hartlepool Partnership spokesman

Violent crimes saw a particularly big increase, going up by 28.1% in the period to 1,821.

Sexual offences also rose by 40.7%, although the figures for that were lower. The rise was from 145 offences to 204.

Shoplifting offences which were reported went up from 1,038 to 1,246 – an increase of 20%.

The partnership had hoped to see all of those figures decrease in 2015-16.

A spokesman for the Safer Hartlepool Partnership said: “Crime reduction and making Hartlepool a safer place to live work and visit remains a top priority for the partnership, and all of the key organisations continue to work closely together.

“There have been recent national changes to the way that certain crimes are recorded and this is reflected in some of the figures.

“It’s also reassuring that anti-social behaviour has dropped by more than 13% (over 1,000 incidents less) on the previous year.

“Ever-shrinking resources is presenting a continuing challenge for all of the organisations involved, but there will be no let-up in our endeavours to ensure that Hartlepool is a community where people feel safe.”

Vehicle crime saw a 0.7% decrease over the year, from 571 to 567, while domestic burglary also went down, from 348 to 333.

Anti-social behaviour in Hartlepool dropped by 13.2% over the year.

Cleveland Police temporary assistant chief constable Ciaron Irvine said: “Each policing area is different and has its own opportunities and challenges, and the Cleveland area has always had a challenging demographic, which means that we have a higher than average number of reported crimes.

“We have made a conscious effort to improve the integrity of our crime data over recent years to ensure the accuracy of our crime recording, in particular in relation to categories such as violent crime.

“This category now encompasses the offence of malicious communications (including harassment on social media), which has contributed heavily towards the increase in recorded violent crime.

“Due to the number of high-profile cases of historic sexual offences, resulting in more victims having the confidence to come forward, the number of offences of rape have also increased.

“Our priority is to keep victims at the heart of what we do and to protect our most vulnerable members of society.

“Working together with partners, we will continue to prevent, reduce and detect crime.”