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Crime falls again in Thames Valley and response to HMIC Valuing the Police report

Crime has fallen by more than 10 per cent in the Thames Valley, according to statistics released today (18/7).

The figures released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show that overall crime dropped by 10.8 per cent, compared to a national reduction of 7.3 per cent.

In the 12 months leading up to March 2013, there were 133,653 offences recorded in the Thames Valley, compared to 172,422 in the previous year.

One of the largest reductions was with robbery offences, which dropped by 25 per cent to 1,292 – the sixth largest reduction in the country. Domestic burglary saw the fifth biggest reduction in the country, with a drop of 19.8 per cent. Non-domestic burglary dropped by 8.6 per cent.

Reductions in violence against the person offences also continued, with a 9.8 per cent reduction - the 13th largest drop in the country.

Meanwhile, Thames Valley Police was also praised in a report released by Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) today.

The report, Valuing the Police, says Thames Valley Police has “made a very strong response to meeting its financial challenge over the last two years”, limiting the impact of austerity cuts on the frontline workforce.

It is one of only four forces in England and Wales where the number of police officers in frontline roles is planned to increase, despite having to make savings of £56.3m over four years.

The report states: “HMIC is confident that the force will be able to deliver its planned savings within this spending review by reducing costs whilst continuing to fight crime successfully.”

Chief Constable Sara Thornton said: “The continued drop in crime across the Force is testament to the hard work of the thousands of officers and staff working for Thames Valley Police.

“It is because of this hard work that the Force has been able to deal with the austerity cuts so effectively, maintaining frontline officers and staff, and cutting crime across the three counties.”

Anthony Stansfeld, Police and Crime Commissioner for Thames Valley said: “I am delighted that crime has fallen again in the Thames Valley. As two of my key priorities I particularly welcome the continued drop in violence against the person and domestic burglary.

“I want to take the opportunity to thank all officers, staff and volunteers whose hard work and dedication has helped to achieve another drop in crime.

“We will continue to work in partnership to ensure that the Thames Valley remains a safe place to live and work.

“I am also pleased that HMIC have recognised that the Force has a plan in place to make the required financial savings whilst still protecting frontline policing.

 “These are challenging financial times but I will be working closely with Thames Valley Police to ensure that despite budget reductions communities across the Thames Valley still have their policing requirements met.”