YEP Says, February 13: Welcome drop in burglary rates down to smart policing

Burglary rates are set to hit a record low.
Burglary rates are set to hit a record low.
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But balance needs to be struck between office-based policing and visible presence on our streets.

THE best gauge of how our police are performing is provided by the latest crime figures. These show that break-ins have fallen by a fifth, with burglary rates for this year set to be the lowest since records began.

In a city that had become a hotspot for a crime that is both an emotional ordeal for its victims and pushes up insurance premiums, this is welcome news.

As we report today, a key factor in this breakthrough has been the deployment of so-called real-time investigators who are using up-to-the-minute intelligence, local knowledge and even social networking sites to crack crime.

Crucially, they are not taking days or even weeks to identify suspects but hours or sometimes even minutes – without even leaving the office.

One crook got away from a break-in in Bramhope only to find police waiting to arrest him when he arrived home less than half an hour later.

It shows the value of utilising the latest technology and making the best use of intelligence to crack cases that in the past may have gone unsolved.

The question is whether forces have sufficient manpower to investigate every burglary, or other crimes, in this way.

At the same time, it’s also important that police strike the right balance between office-based investigations and having the visible presence on our streets to deter such crimes in the first place.

Putting schools on fast track to better results

YORKSHIRE can be proud of many things – but its schools don’t always make the grade.

The region traditionally delivers the worst overall results in the country, which is why all 15 councils are joining forces in a bid to raise standards.

Schools such as Benton Park in Rawdon which are already improving will now be given extra help to improve even further.

There is no secret formula to creating a good school – it boils down to good teaching, strong discipline and a vision that staff and pupils buy into.

But the sharing of expertise in this way should help put schools on the fast track to delivering better results.

First buses.

YEP says: WE need to change our attitude to bus travel