BURGLARIES in the east of the borough have risen close to an alarming 100% since 2012.
Stanford and Corringham residents have raised concerns at the apparent rapid increase in thefts in the area. From burglaries, to thefts from sheds, to thefts from cars, there was a clear sense that acquisitive crime was on the increase.
But with the recession now in its fifth year, was there really an increase over the past twelve months?
YT submitted a Freedom of Information request to Essex Police and asked the following question.
Q. Could you tell me how many burglaries there were in the Stanford/Corringham area between Jan 1st-March 31st in 2012 and the same period in 2013?
Essex Police replied:
Stanford Le Hope West: 2012:16 2013:38
The Homestead: 2012:11 2013:12
Stanford Le Hope East: 2012:11 2013:22
Corringham and Fobbing 2012:16 2013:20
This makes a total of 92 in 2013 compared to 54 in 2012. Close onto a 100% increase.
The increase begs a number of questions. With the recession, now in its fifth year, why has there been such a rapid rise over the last twelve months?
Some may question whether the £43 million pounds worth of cuts to Essex Police have had an impact?
One resident believed that a comment by a group of local youths may hold the key.
The resident (who did not wish to be named) said: “A group of youths were causing annoyance near my shop. I came out to remonstrate and warned them that I would call the police. They just laughed at me and said, “There are no police….”
Next week, YT will be putting these figures to the Essex Police and Crime Commissioner, Nick Alston.
Stanford East councillor, Phil Smith (Lab) sees the spike as a consequence of political actions.
Cllr Smith said: “For me it would seem reasonable to draw the conclusion that the cuts imposed by this Tory lead coalition on the police have had a direct result on the increase in number of burglaries. A police presence reassures residents that they are safe plus it deters criminal activities.
“When you look at the numbers they are not massive but for each one of these people it will feels like they have been violated, you do not feel safe in your own home and in a lot of cases it is items of sentimental value that have been taken and they can never be replaced.
“I would call on the Local Police Commissioner to fight the cuts and to increase the numbers of police back to at least the numbers we had before the Tory lead coalition started on its failed program of cuts.”
Stanford West councillor, Terry Hipsey said: “This is what happens when investment into police services, (numbers and stations being closed) or people who do not have access to money through lose of their income happen.
“Thanks to our two local MP’s and their condoning councillor supporters of this rotten coalition government are the ones who should be held to account and need to answer why they have allowed what seems to me to be a real travesty for those poor people who have found their properties broken into and personal items removed.”
Conservative Homesteads councillor, Sue MacPherson has also pledged to look into the figures.