FAMILY violence continues to be the main factor in assault statistics throughout the Warrnambool police district.
Inspector Kevin Archer said that while crimes against people had jumped 5.6 per cent, there had been an 8.3 per cent reduction in non-family violence assaults compared with the previous financial period.
Inspector Archer said the reduction in non-family violence assaults was pleasing and against the state trend.
“Family violence continues to be the main driver in the increase in assaults across the area and remains a focus for not only police, but our partners including the Department of Human Services and family support groups,” he said.
“Property crimes have decreased and it’s particularly pleasing to see our focus on identifying at-risk areas and improving patrols, combined with the arrest of offenders for burglary, are having a positive effect.”
Inspector Archer said it was the responsibility of all community members to ensure their homes were secure and not accessible to uninvited visitors.
“The majority of residential burglaries occur through access points that are left unlocked,” he said.
“It’s unfortunate, but as the investigations prove, a lot of these offenders are opportunists and by removing the opportunity you can take responsibility for the safety of your home.”
The police chief said theft from motor vehicles was again the major contributor to the increase in crime.
“While the offenders are a strong contributor, a majority of these offences are also opportunistic,” Inspector Archer said.
“It’s timely to remind everyone to ensure that you lock your vehicle when leaving it and that valuables, including loose change, should not be left on display in the vehicle.”
Inspector Archer said road trauma statistics continued to drop.
“But any injury or fatality is one too many,” he said.
“With winter closing, I hope, care still needs to be displayed when travelling on wet roads and I implore all drivers to take that little bit of extra time,” he said.
“Overall, a reduction in crime of 4.2 per cent is a great result and reflects the hard work from all police in this area with the assistance of the community. We will not be resting and will continue our hard work to make this police service area as safe possible.’’