Crim­i­nal of­fences rise in Alpine area

Alpine Observer - - News -

CRIM­I­NAL of­fences in Alpine Shire in­creased al­most seven per cent in the year to Septem­ber 30.

The lat­est crime sta­tis­tics show the num­ber of of­fences was up 19 – a to­tal of 296 com­pared with 277 in the pre­vi­ous year.

The most re­cent fig­ure – while up slightly – re­flects a long-term de­crease in crimes in the shire af­ter more than 300 in­ci­dents were each recorded in 2013, 2014 and 2015, re­spec­tively.

Prop­erty and de­cep­tion crimes re­mained the high­est, with 79 thefts, 45 prop­erty dam­age in­ci­dents and 27 bur­glar­ies or break-ins.

Vic­to­ria Po­lice Wan­garatta dis­trict act­ing in­spec­tor Mark de Haan said the in­crease in Alpine prop­erty dam­age of­fences was of­ten linked with il­le­gal deer hunt­ing.

“The es­ca­la­tion in dam­age to gates on pri­vate prop­erty and na­tional parks is of­ten con­nected to peo­ple break­ing into pri­vate prop­erty for the pur­pose of deer hunt­ing,” he said.

“We’ve seen a num­ber of gates be­ing dam­aged, which is a con­cern be­cause these gates are closed for a rea­son.

“The moun­tain­ous ar­eas in the Alpine Shire can pose a risk to the pub­lic, par­tic­u­larly in win­ter where snow may con­ceal haz­ards.”

A to­tal of 47 as­sault and re­lated of­fences were also recorded and there were 28 sex­ual of­fences.

Over­all, Vic­to­ria recorded a 4.8 per cent fall in crime from last year, but a jump of 19.3pc from five years ago.

In 2017, the big­gest jump was recorded at jus­tice in­sti­tu­tions and im­mi­gra­tion fa­cil­i­ties – with a 44.5pc in­crease in of­fences.

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