This is how much reported crime has fallen across Sunderland since the coronavirus lockdown began

Official figures reveal for the first time how much reported crime has dropped across Sunderland since the start of the coronavirus lockdown.

Thursday, 21st May 2020, 4:16 pm
Updated Friday, 22nd May 2020, 12:28 pm

The fall from 2,331 to 2,174 cases equates to a 6.73 per cent drop on March 2019.

Among the reductions in Sunderland city centre were for violence and sexual offences, down from 185 to 147 reports, and shoplifting, down from 74 to 57 complaints.

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A deserted High Street West, in Sunderland, before the coronavirus lockdown restrictions were eased. Picture by FRANK REID.

Northumbria Police say ongoing analysis during the pandemic, which triggered the nationwide lockdown on March 23, has allowed officers “to be in the best position to seek to prevent crime” by “targeting the right areas at the right times”.

Assistant Chief Constable Scott Hall, of Northumbria Police, said: “The restrictions have obviously had a significant impact on the lives of residents and businesses across our region.

“Nowhere has this been more obvious than in our town and city centres, which have been the quietest they have been in years, and that has of course led to reductions in crime.

“Through ongoing analysis, we have sought to anticipate and respond to the changes in crime and offending as a consequence of the restrictions.

“This has allowed us to be in the best position to seek to prevent crime, targeting the right areas at the right times.

“For example, we have patrols looking to deter opportunistic thieves from targeting businesses that are now closed due to the restrictions.

“We are also working hard to reach victims of domestic abuse, who now more than ever may find themselves trapped at home with an abuser, so they can access vital support services.

“We will continue to look to provide the very best policing service that our communities expect and deserve during these unprecedented times.”

The figures, released by the Home Office via its www.police.uk website, show that the number forcewide reports fell by nearly 2,300 from 17,720 in March 2019 to 15,422.

This equates to a 12.96 per cent drop since last year.

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