Crime statistics 2017: Moira rises as crime drops throughout police service areas

Total offences per police service area. Data: Crime Statistic Agency
Total offences per police service area. Data: Crime Statistic Agency

Crime in Moira has jumped 26.7 per cent despite offences decreasing across all other municipalities in Wangaratta and Wodonga police service areas.

Moira Shire recorded 1566 offences in the year ending March 2016 and 1984 in the same period for 2017. 

Wangaratta Inspector Kerrie Hicks said police were reviewing resources.

“At Moira we’re currently reviewing divisional resources to ensure we have the right people at the right place at the right time,” Inspector Hicks said. “The team there do an amazing job.”

Inspector Hicks said an the increase in thefts in Moira, from 337 to 468; 38.9 per cent, and burglaries from 159 to 179; 12.6 per cent, was the result of opportunistic theft with police working with the community on prevention techniques. 

In Moira, sexual offences jumped 217.3 per cent from 75 to 238, and drug dealing and trafficking offences rose from 21 to 39, up 85.7 per cent.

Crime across Wangaratta police service area was down seven per cent.

“We’ve obviously had some really devastating recent incidents in Wangaratta but it’s unusual and the impact has been considerable,” she said. “In terms of Wangaratta I’m overwhelmed by the community response and strength.

“We’re working with other agencies from the department of health and human service to the department of education and councils to tackle some complex issues.”

Homicide and related offences in the service area were down 50 per cent, from eight to four in 2017.

Instances of drug dealing and trafficking, and cultivating or manufacturing drugs all decreased in the area by 36.1 per cent and 27.3 per cent respectively.

Inspector Hicks said statistics were helpful tools to coordinate resources.

“Statistics are only part of the story,” she said. “For example an increase in justice procedures is positive news it means we’re out there breeching people who are on bail if they commit further offences.”

Crime in Wodonga police service area was down 6.7 per cent, but abduction offences rose 200 per cent from four cases in the year ending march 2016 to 12 in the same period in 2017.

Drug use and possession rose 50 per cent from 134 offences to 202 in 2017, an increase of 50.7 per cent. 

Drug cultivation and trafficking decreased 33.3 per cent, from 12 to eight instances, with drug dealing and trafficking dropping 39 per cent.