Agenda item

Crime Statistics in Thanet


Chief Inspector Sharon Adley introduced Inspector Connor (Community Safety Unit Inspector) and then presented her report:


  • CI Adley explained that the changes in crime recording processes were continuing to contribute to the increases in crime across the force. To put this into context, previously if four people were found fighting outside a nightclub and it was not clear who was in the right or wrong, one report of affray would have been recorded whereas now four counter allegations of assault and one of affray could be recorded.
  • CI Adley stressed that this was a better reflection of the extent of offences committed against a victim to enable the appropriate assessment of any safeguarding requirements for both victims and witnesses. The increase in all crime experienced within Thanet is in line with the force.
  • As expected there have been seasonal increases in the summer months particularly in May through to August as the local economy experienced increased visitor numbers coming to visit Thanet seaside areas coupled with the hot weather.


  • The crime category that saw the biggest rise was violence against the person with the biggest rise experienced in the category of violence without injury;
  • Locally in Thanet, police and partner agencies have continued to undertake a number of different approaches to prevent crime; during September, Thanet took part in a week long national campaign against Knife Crime (Op Sceptre). This operation included many different strands of activity, a key one being enforcement in the Night Time Economy but also included preventative work and engagement with young people.
  • Criminal Damage – this category had experienced a 5% increase in the period under review;
  • However, a great deal of work had been carried out by the police in collaboration with other agencies on a number of areas that included reducing anti-social behaviour and closure of premises in Margate utilising  the Anti-Social Behaviour legislation. Work had also been undertaken in Ramsgate and Westwood Cross. Street week was continuing and would be taking place in Ramsgate.
  • Vehicle Crime – There had been a 5% reduction in this category between October 2017 and October 2018;

·  Significant amount of work had taken place in response to a spate of mopeds being stolen in the district whereby they had been ridden in a dangerous manner and had been causing anti-social behaviour. This had resulted in some arrests with stolen mopeds being recovered.


Members then asked questions and made comments as follows:


·  There appeared to be an increase in the acceptable levels for crime recording. There should be an increase in policing resources, instead of increasing the increasing the acceptable levels;

·  Did the Police breakdown the reporting categories into serious and minor injuries incidents?

·  Was there a percentage of the high risk crimes that resulted in prosecutions in the reports compiled by the police?

·  Was human trafficking also reported in the district?

·  Did the Police also monitor drug activity in the district?

·  The Police were doing a great job;

·  How cooperative were residents in supporting the work of the Police?

·  Could the Panel be given a presentation on the Police response times to emergency calls?


Responding to Member questions Chief Inspector Sharon Adley and Inspector Connor made the following comments:


·  CI Adley explained that crime categories were not broken down into serious and minor crimes but clearly there would be greater investigative investment for those crimes considered serious, which is what the public would expect – there will always be a proportionate response to individual crimes taking into account the nature of the crime and the wishes of the victim. CI Adley was unable to provide percentages relating to prosecutions.

·  Human trafficking was a hidden crime that required continuous monitoring to identify the traffickers;

·  The local communities did give significant support to community safety work activities for which the police were extremely grateful;

·  The police response to calls could be a presentation topic on its own as CI Adley did not have this information to hand. However, she stressed that those calls graded as emergency calls were, wherever possible, responded to immediately.


Members thanked CI Adley and Insp Connor and then noted the report.


POST MEETING NOTE: Regarding the question ‘acceptable levels for crime recording’ - CI Adley had since this meeting spoken with the analyst to provide the following update: The graphs which were presented at the meeting showed two red lines which are the upper and lower control limits for the district, which are two standard deviations from the mean. This shows anticipated levels of crime. Anything outside of these two lines would be considered unusual and require further understanding. There was an upward step change in May in all crime which was due to the actual level of crime being above the average (green line) over a set number of periods. This then came down during August. (Thanet is affected by seasonal changes as explained during the meeting). These step changes generate a new average. These graphs enabled the Police to predict policing response – it did not mean that the Police were accepting of these increased levels.