Our streets safer as crime drops across the region
THE Fraser Coast is a safer place to live compared with 12 months ago after a 3% drop in the overall crime rate in the Wide Bay Burnett policing district.
The decrease was revealed in the Queensland Police Service Annual Statistical Review released yesterday and provides a snapshot of crime rates for the 2014-2015 financial year compared with 2013-2014.
The report shows the number of robberies recorded in the region plummeted, with a whopping drop of almost 45%.
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The number of armed robberies decreased from 42 in 2013-2014 to just 21 in 2014-2015.
The Wide Bay Police District encompasses Hervey Bay, Maryborough and as far north as Bundaberg and as far south as Gympie.
Queensland Police Wide Bay Burnett Acting Superintendent Stephen Donnelly said the decrease was a joint effort between police and the community.
He said this was made evident after two armed robberies in Maryborough in the past month - one at the Lennox St Convenience Store and one at Walker Street Express.
"Those ones were solved quickly thanks to the staff (at the shops)," he said.
"We are only as effective as the community we serve."
Supt Donnelly said police had strategies in place to combat crimes such as robberies and assaults.
He said the 24% decrease in the number of cars being stolen was most likely due to a strong education program and the community being more vigilant.
"It's as small as locking your car and moving your keys out of plain sight," he said.
The rate of break-ins across the district fell by 8%, unlawful entry into homes decreased by 15% while unlawful entry into shops fell by 14%.
"A lot of break-ins are opportunistic and are preventable," Supt Donnelly said.
"It is encouraging to see a steady decrease in these offences and demonstrates the community is actively participating in crime prevention."
Overall the number of offences against the person decreased by 14%, offences against property fell by 4% and other offences dropped by 1%.
Member for Maryborough Bruce Saunders welcomed the statistics.
"What the data shows is that the Wide Bay and Burnett District is a safer place to live, work and visit than it was this time last year - and that is a great thing," Mr Saunders said.