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Crime’s up in Southbank

06 Apr 2017

Crime’s up in Southbank Image

The Crime Statistics Agency released its annual figures last month and once again the numbers don’t look good for postcode 3006.

Overall crime in Southbank and South Wharf for the year 2016 rose 13.6 per cent, which follows an increase of 16.8 per cent from 2015.

Crimes against the person significantly increased by 35 per cent, while property and deception offences also saw a jump from 2015 of 17.8 per cent.

Drug offences also increased by 26.7 per cent, largely as a result of an 88.6 per cent increase in drug dealing and trafficking offences. Drug use and possession offences also increased 16.3 per cent.

However, while these numbers may appear alarming, Southbank Police Station commander Snr Sgt Steve Bills said an increase in drug-related offences meant police were making more arrests in this category.

“That’s actually a good news story in a way because that’s an indication that more offenders are being caught,” he said. “Any drug-related offences don’t get reported unless an offender is actually caught.”

While burglary and break-ins also increased 19.3 per cent, a minor increase of 0.2 per cent in thefts is positive news for local police.

Theft offences, particularly from or of a vehicle, have caused police in Southbank ongoing headaches over recent years and while, not in decline, the minor increase is fractional compared with spikes from previous years.

While the statistics released recorded all crimes up until December 2016, Snr Sgt Bills said police had noticed an ongoing decline in property related crimes in Southbank.

“Our results show that property crime has gone down on all fronts so hopefully it’s an indication that the awareness messages around being vigilant are getting through to residents,” he said.

“It’s important that residents keep up the work that they’re doing. You can’t leave anything in your car that’s at all obvious and it’s important to make sure you keep all your possessions safely secured.”

Snr Sgt Bills told Southbank Local News police often received reports of thefts from multi-level residential car parks either due to offenders tailgating or following a vehicle in before the gate had closed.

He said it was important that residents understood that living in a residential tower didn’t necessarily guarantee security and police are continuing to encourage vigilance.

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