Summer crime drop is hailed by top police officer

Hampshire Police chief constable Alex Marshall
Hampshire Police chief constable Alex Marshall

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HAMPSHIRE’S top policeman has hailed officers and staff for continuing to cut crime despite a massive increase in demand on policing this summer.

Chief Constable Alex Marshall has spoken out as figures reveal total crime reports dropped 16 per cent between April 1 and September 4 compared to the same period last year.

The total number of crimes reported to the force in the period fell from 58,961 to 49,500.

That is despite police being faced with additional pressures including policing London 2012, the Isle of Wight Festival, Bestival and other events across Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.

Mr Alex Marshall said: ‘I would like to thank each and every one of my police officers and staff for their hard work during the summer.

‘We’ve had some great events in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight over the last few months that have attracted thousands of people to the region.

‘This has truly been a summer to remember and I hope it’s one that has brought communities in Hampshire and Isle of Wight together in a spirit of celebration.

‘We’ve been planning well in advance to ensure each event passed peacefully, that those attend could enjoy it without worrying about security, and that we were able to maintain an excellent service to the local community.

‘The Olympic Torch Relay in particular was a great opportunity for my officers and staff to get involved in the celebrations, engage with the community and showcase our professionalism.

‘The reduction in crime is testament to our successful planning and commitment to protecting the people we serve from those who would cause them harm.’

House burglaries fell 27 per cent in the period, violent offences dropped 13 per cent and anti-social behaviour reports fell eight per cent.

Councillor Adrian Collett, Hampshire Police Authority chairman, said: ‘The continuing decrease in overall crime at a time when the force has policed a number of high profile local events and supplied mutual aid to the policing of London 2012 is remarkable.

‘The people of Hampshire and the Isle of Wight are safer as a result of the hard work and ongoing commitment from the Constabulary.

‘The authority has always placed a firm focus on cutting crime and I’m pleased to see that there has been no let-up.’