Yorkshire gun crime ‘falling’

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Police are “holding up well” in the face of massive government cuts, force watchdogs say.

And there was another piece of good news at a meeting of West Yorkshire Police Authority’s Strategic Planning and Performance committee when they heard that gun crime figures across the county have plummeted – despite a recent fatal shooting in Leeds.

The meeting in Wakefield yesterday was looking especially at any impact that huge budget cuts have had on keeping West Yorkshire safe from criminals and their crimes.

As reported in the YEP, fears have been raised about the future of front line policing in West Yorkshire as the force faces slashing up to 2,000 police and civilian jobs to meet government funding cuts of up to £100m over the next four years.

But speaking at Friday’s meeting, Deputy Chief Constable David Crompton said: “Performance is holding up and key performance indicators are certainly holding up well.”

Gun crime statistics presented to the meeting also showed a drop from 335 recorded incidents in 2009/10 to 253 in the same period 2011/12.

That figure comes in the wake of the fatal shooting of 34-year-old Gavin Clarke in Savile Place, Leeds, on Monday, August 8.

Dep Chf Con Crompton added: “That is a significant reduction and it reflects some really good work that has been done. These are always serious offences and always cause concern to the community.”

The meeting also heard that crime is at the lowest point during the last four years and more residents than ever before believe that the police do a good or excellent job.

Ann Liston, chairman of the committee, said: “It is always pleasing to see crime falling and that residents in West Yorkshire believe the force are doing a good or excellent job.

“This quarter a spotlight has been put on detection rates for domestic violence. We have been scrutinising how the force has been handling domestic violence cases and results can now be seen with a detection rate at its highest level for six years.”

Full details of the meeting can be found on the West Yorkshire Police Authority website: www.wypa.org

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