Major drop in crime across Merseyside

Crime across Merseyside has fallen by 14% in the past year, with decreases in major offences including gun discharges and knife crime.

In the last financial year, 2023-24, data recorded by the region’s police force showed a sharp downturn in reported offences. The figures were confirmed in the first scrutiny meeting of the second term of Emily Spurrell, Merseyside’s police and crime commissioner (PCC).

Among the headline figures was a more than 50% drop in homicides on the 2022/23 figures, with 11 across the region in the last 12 months.

The information was presented as part of regular scrutiny meetings held by the PCC and was the first since she secured a second term in the role, having first been elected in 2021. In May’s ballot, she comfortably held onto her post taking four times as many votes as the second-placed Conservative candidate Bob Teesdale.

Presenting an update on annual figures, Fiona Smith, head of performance for Merseyside Police said overall crime was down in the region by 14% compared to 2022/23. This included a decrease in neighbourhood crime – including domestic burglary, vehicle-related crime, theft from the person, and robbery – by 37%.

A total of 208 fewer knife crimes were recorded, a decrease of 16% with firearms discharges shown as down by 12% with 37 reported. In terms of homicides, 11 were reported during the period discussed, a reduction of 52% on the previous 12 months.

Mrs Spurrell said, “It’s hugely reassuring that crime continues to fall across Merseyside. It means less people are being harmed, fewer families living in fear and safer, stronger communities across the region.

“This is what we all want to see and what the Chief Constable and I have been working with so many partners to deliver. It’s really significant that we also continue to see the use of guns on our streets at the lowest level since records began, as well as a marked decrease in the use of knives.

“While these figures are hugely encouraging, we know there is more we can do. We are determined to drive these figures down even further and that’s what my focus will be over the next four years.”

The decrease in crime numbers were also noted as 8% better than the area’s most similar forces and 4% lower than other North West constabularies.

The rate of vehicle crime was put under the spotlight by the PCC, with her questioning senior officers on the response from Merseyside Police following the issue being raised by voters during her election period. Temporary Assistant Chief Constable Jen Wilson said the force had a “comprehensive” vehicle crime reduction plan with an experienced vehicle crime group supporting investigations.

T/ACC Wilson said officers had established there was a “real strong evidence base” that connects motorcycle thefts, serious organised crime and anti-social behaviour and success of the force’s approach to tackling it was evident in the reduction of thefts reported.

Image: www.fotopiaimages.com

Why not follow birkenhead.news on Facebook, Twitter, and Threads? You can also send story ideas or letters to the editor to news@birkenhead.news