DYFED-Powys Police has vowed not to become complacent to new and emerging crime types, despite being ranked the safest place to live in England and Wales when it comes to victim-based offences.
The force has the lowest number of victim-based crimes, which includes sexual offences, robbery, murder and burglary, according to Home Office data released today (January 24).
Statistics show that for the year ending September 2018 there were 43.1 victim-based crimes per 1,000 people living in the force area. West Yorkshire was ranked at the other end of the scale with 104.9 victims of crime per 1,000 people.
Despite this, the force has vowed not to take its status as the safest area to live for granted, acknowledging that supporting victims of crime is its priority over rankings, and accepting that its officers and staff will face emerging challenges over the coming years.
Deputy Chief Constable Richard Lewis said: “I am pleased to see that the latest figures show that Dyfed-Powys is the safest places to live in the UK when victim-based crimes are taken into consideration.
“However, this is no consolation to a victim whose life might have been severely impacted by a crime. For them, what is most important is being able to access the right level of support as they go through the criminal justice system and endeavour to get their life back on track.
“This is why we will continue to put victims at the heart of everything we do, investigating incidents thoroughly but sensitively, and using specially trained officers to ensure we always give the best possible service.”
DCC Lewis added that the force cannot stand still as the landscape of crime changes, and that senior officers must ensure colleagues are continually learning and adapting the ways in which they disrupt criminality
“Issues such as cybercrime, modern slavery and county lines drugs networks are just a handful of examples of the types of crimes that 15 years ago would have been unthinkable,” he said. “In a short period of time, these have become serious issues for not only Dyfed-Powys but across the UK.
“We do, of course, have plans in place to tackle these issues. For instance, a significant investment has been made in the force’s Digital Communications and Cybercrime Unit, and there are several operations ongoing to disrupt and prevent county lines – but it would be naïve of us to sit back and think that we don’t need to continue to adapt.
“We must do all we can to stay ahead of those taking advantage of or trying to profit from the most vulnerable in our communities.
“While I am proud and pleased to see that we have come out on top of this Home Office data, I am acutely aware that we have serious emerging issues to tackle, alongside strengthening our neighbourhood teams which form the backbone of policing.”