Crime falls amid ‘spin’ allegations

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REPORTED crimes across the Kingston area dropped in the first three months of the year according to the latest figures released by the Crime Statistics Agency Victoria.

The statistics, released on Thursday (14 June), showed there were 10,376 offences recorded in the Kingston region in the 12 months until March, down from 11,652 at the same time the year before.

Neighbourhood Watch Victoria, which started with a pilot program in Frankston in 1983, welcomed the statistics “indicating a continued decline in crime across the state”.

There was a decrease of about 10 per cent across Victoria. Neighbourhood Watch Victoria CEO Bambi Gordon said it is vital for communities to band together to build relationships with police and report crime.

That is where Neighbourhood Watch plays such a vital role,” she said.

“Our vision hasn’t changed over three-plus decades; to have connected, informed and empowered communities, and community members who feel safe and secure.”

Victoria Police Chief Commissioner Graham Ashton congratulated Neighbourhood Watch on its 35th anniversary.

“Over this long period of time, our organisations have shared a close relationship, with Neighbourhood Watch playing a key role in crime prevention. “

State Liberal opposition police spokesman Edward O’Donohue accused Premier Daniel Andrews of “spinning about crime statistics”.

Mr O’Donohue said there has been a rise in violent crime including home invasions, carjackings, assaults and “youth gang violence” in the past few years.

“In the nearly four years of the Andrews government, attempted murder and manslaughter is up 42 per cent, burglary and break and enter is up 33 per cent and assaults are up 17.2 per cent.

“Under Daniel Andrews, there has been an increase in home invasions, an increase in carjackings, an increase in assaults, an increase in youth gang violence and an increase in the number of his excuses.”

The Crime Statistics Agency was established by the previous Liberal Napthine government independent of Victoria Police.

Voters will go to the polls in November for the state election and the seats of Carrum, Mordialloc and Bentleigh, all held by Labor and won from the Liberals at the 2014 election, are regarded as marginal seats.

First published in the Chelsea Mordialloc Mentone News – 20 June 2018

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