General decrease in crime in Gauteng

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Johannesburg - Most categories of crime is on the decline in Gauteng, according to figures presented by Gauteng Police Commissioner Lieutenant-General Mzwandile Petros on Tuesday.

Petros was presenting the 2011/2012 Crime Report to the Gauteng Provincial Legislature Portfolio Committee on Community Safety in Johannesburg.

During the year in review, serious crime decreased by 5.9%.

There was also a decline in contact crimes such as murder, attempted murder, robberies, sexual offences, assault grievous bodily harm (GBH) and common assault.

These crimes decreased by 11% compared to the previous financial year.

Murder, specifically, decreased by 8.6%.

Noting some trends, Petros said in Gauteng there was displacement of crime from city centres to outlying areas.

This meant that police stations in all areas needed to have strategies to deal with crime.

A decrease in business robberies in the province was also recorded. This had also resulted in a displacement, with criminals no longer targeting the big businesses but spaza shops and small businesses that could not afford security.

Trio crimes - carjacking, robbery residential and business - decreased by 12.3% for the year under review.

There was a 12.3% reduction in sexual offences and a 9.1% reduction in rape, including attempted rape in the province.

When it came to robbery with aggravating circumstances, this category crime declined by 12.9% over the year in review.

With regards to bank robberies, Petros said police were determined to wipe out this category of crime and that with the help from partners in stepping up at banks, bank robberies could very well become a thing of the past.

There was a 28% reduction in bank robberies and 55.7% drop in cash-in- transit robberies.

While ATM bombings declined by 37.4% in the year under review, Petros noted that when the criminals arrested for this crime were behind bars, the figures for this crime dropped, only to spike once the criminals got out of prison.

An area of concern was theft out of motor vehicles, which increased by 3.5%.

Petros said this crime was creating problems at a national level as well. Most people were falling victim at shopping malls to criminals using jamming devices to unlock their cars and gain access to their vehicles.

He added that there were some instance in which he wanted to see an increase in categories of crime such as confiscation of drugs, illegal possession of firearms and driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs.

These crimes were detected due to police action and an increase in their figures would indicate that police were doing their jobs and saving lives. -