South Africa

Crime stats: Property and contact crimes plus CIT heists are down

Crime stats: Property and contact crimes plus CIT heists are down

Police minister Bheki Cele said the police service is making strides in the fight against crime as provinces have reported declines in various categories in the first three months of this year.

Releasing the latest CrimeStats report on Friday, Cele noted the 8.5% decrease in the overall number of contact crimes.

Contact crime refers to crimes in which the victims themselves are the targets of violence or property is targeted and the victims in the vicinity of the crime are subjected to threats of violence or the use of violence.

“We cannot afford to give criminals terrorising communities any room to breathe,” is how Cele ended the report.

The minister highlighted successes in combating cash-in-transit (CIT) heists. He said in the first three months of this year, CIT heists decreased by 10.6%.

“In the last national crime statistics release, I didn’t mince my words when I called on police to urgently get their act together in addressing the high incidents of cash-in-transit heists. While police officers still have their hands full when it comes to preventing this crime, they certainly have started to change their responses against the thugs who risk the lives of community members for their selfish gains.”

Cele said the police service was aware there were provinces regressing on the gains they previously made in the creation of safer communities.

“As part of the police service turnaround plan, operational oversight interventions in the Western Cape and KwaZulu-Natal have already started. Hundreds of additional forces have been deployed from national to these provinces to assist in crime fighting initiatives.

“Our focus will also turn to the Free State and Mpumalanga for implementation of similar interventions. More police boots and functional police patrol vehicles will always work in our favour.”

Below is a breakdown of crimes and the percentage by which they have decreased (or increased) when compared to the same time last year.

All contact crimes decreased by 8.5%:

  • murder - up 8.4%;
  • sexual offences - 3.9%;
  • attempted murder - 8.7%;
  • assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm - 9.3%;
  • common assault - 9.3%;
  • common robbery - 22.1%; and
  • robbery with aggravating circumstances - 7.9%.

All sexual offences decreased by 3.9%:

  • rape - 3.9%;
  • sexual assault - 0.2%;
  • attempted sexual offences - 12.9%; and 
  • contact sexual offences - 12.8 %.

Other crimes:

  • carjacking - 4.9%;
  • robbery at residential premises - 7.6%;
  • robbery at non-residential premises 2.8%;
  • robbery of cash-in-transit - 10.6%;
  • bank robbery - one case higher; and 
  • truck hijacking - 24.6%.

Contact-related crimes decreased by5.1%:

  • arson - 14.2%; and 
  • malicious damage to property - 4.8%.

All property-related crimes decreased by 20.8%:

  • burglary at non-residential premises - 17.2%;
  • burglary at residential premises - 20.5%;
  • theft of motor vehicle and motor cycle - 17.2%;
  • theft out or from motor vehicle - 27.7%; and
  • stock theft - 11.1%.

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