Northern Ireland

NI crime rate lowest for 13 years

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The crime rate in Northern Ireland in the past financial year is at its lowest for 13 years.

Statistics released by the PSNI show there were just over 105,000 offences committed in the last year, compared with more than 109,000 in 2009.

The statistics also showed that the number of bombings in the last year has almost doubled.

The latest police crime figure show that there were 99 bombing incidents in 2010/11, up from 50 the previous year.

But while crimes like burglary fell, sexual offences increased.

The overall detection rate has also risen to 27.3%.

Community support

Chief Constable Matt Baggott said the figures were a tribute to the perseverance and determination of the Police Service.

"I am pleased to report that this year, despite the very difficult security environment in which we work, we have seen a decrease in the number of overall crimes recorded as well as an increase in the detection rate.

"Despite the challenges we face, policing is working.

"But we are not complacent and while the increased threat does impact upon the style and delivery of our service in some areas, we are determined that it will not prevent us working with people to tackle crime," Mr Baggott added.

"These figures reflect our determination to deliver the service that people tell us they want, addressing local crime and serious harm."

The Chief Constable also said falling crime shows that the police have been embraced by all communities.

"We are already demonstrating our intent to build a safer future and the vast majority are supporting us," Mr Baggott said.

"This can only help us achieve the peaceful society that we all want, and that we are all striving towards."

Mr Baggott also said work was underway to improve the processes the police uses to tackle crime more effectively.

"We now have an additional 600 officers delivering neighbourhood and response policing, more than at any other time in the last three years."

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