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More weapons off region’s streets

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By Fiona Reid
More weapons off region’s streets

A POLICE crackdown on knife crime in Dumfries and Galloway has been hailed a success.

Proactive work by officers locally has led to a rise in the number of crimes relating to offensive or bladed weapons, with 106 recorded between April and September.

It compares to 73 in the same time last year.

More of these offences were also successfully detected, up from 71 in 2019/20 to 92 this year.

Meanwhile, in the six month period, crimes involving drugs fell, while motor vehicle crime rose, with 134 crimes recorded.

A total of 71 motor vehicle crimes, which include theft and attempted theft, were detected, up from 42 the previous year.

Although the number of housebreakings fell slightly, more were detected, with 48 detected in the first six months of 2020/21 compared with 31 the previous year.

Nationally, there has been a 45.4 per cent rise in cases of fraud and this was reflected in Dumfries and Galloway, where 212 fraud offences were recorded.

Police say that instances of many other crimes are returning to pre-lockdown levels after a significant drop in overall offending between April and June.

Reports of anti-social behaviour were up significantly, from 3556 to 5030, with many of these reports related to concerns over breaches of coronavirus restrictions.

Chief Superintendent Linda Jones, commander of Dumfries and Galloway division, said: “Our division is one of the safest places to live in Scotland but we are always listening to our communities and tackling issues of concern.

“Knife crime is utterly unacceptable and Police Scotland officers will continue to target those who choose to carry weapons.

“We also know how distressing it is for victims of housebreaking and we use a range of tactics to target criminals who commit these offences.

“We are seeing a rise in cybercrime and we are working in public, private and increasingly in virtual spaces to keep people safe.

“Officers are also working tirelessly, as they have been throughout the coronavirus pandemic, to engage with members of the public and support the collective effort to prevent the virus from spreading.”

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