Vi­tal statis­tics

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Fast facts at your fin­ger­tips

Statis­tics South Africa (Stats SA) re­cently re­leased the 2016/17 Vic­tims of Crime Survey (VOCS) re­sults. The VOCS is an an­nual house­hold-based survey that aims to pro­vide in­for­ma­tion about the dy­nam­ics of crime.

Stats SA con­ducted the re­search for the VOCS from

April 2016 to March 2017.

The survey found that crime ex­pe­ri­enced by house­holds and in­di­vid­u­als aged 16 years and older had de­creased slightly.

Ap­prox­i­mately seven per­cent of house­holds in South Africa were vic­tims of crime in 2016/17, com­pared to about nine per­cent of house­holds in 2015/16. An es­ti­mated

1 468 278 crime in­ci­dents were ex­pe­ri­enced by 1 153

984 house­holds in 2016/17.

The es­ti­mated num­ber of in­ci­dents of crime de­creased for many types of crime. House­break­ing in­ci­dents de­creased by eight per­cent; home rob­bery de­creased by 25 per­cent and theft of per­sonal prop­erty de­creased by 12 per­cent.

In­ci­dents of hi­jack­ing of mo­tor ve­hi­cles and sex­ual of­fences in­creased by 93 per­cent and 110 per­cent re­spec­tively.

Es­ti­mates for hi­jack­ing and sex­ual of­fences, how­ever, should be used cau­tiously as they fall un­der the sec­ond level of qual­ity (ac­cept­able statis­tics) due to the small num­ber of re­spon­dents that ex­pe­ri­enced th­ese types of crime.

About 1.2 mil­lion house­holds ex­pe­ri­enced about 1.5 mil­lion crime in­ci­dents in 2016/17. Male-headed house­holds had a higher per­cent­age (7.5 per­cent) of vic­tim­i­sa­tion com­pared to fe­male-headed house­holds

(6.6 per­cent).

House­holds headed by coloured peo­ple (8.9 per­cent) were the most likely to be vic­timised, and house­holds headed by black Africans (6.9 per­cent) were the least likely to be vic­timised.

The survey re­ports that house­break­ing/bur­glary

(53 per­cent) was the most com­mon crime house­holds ex­pe­ri­enced in 2016/17, fol­lowed by theft of live­stock

(11 per­cent) and home rob­bery (10 per­cent).

Theft of per­sonal prop­erty heads the in­di­vid­ual crime list at 42 per­cent, fol­lowed by as­sault (18 per­cent) and rob­bery (16 per­cent).

Stats SA es­ti­mated that 776 933 house­break­ing in­ci­dents were com­mit­ted in 2016/17, which af­fected

647 340 house­holds (four per­cent of all house­holds in South Africa).

Buf­falo City in the East­ern Cape had the high­est pro­por­tion of house­holds vic­timised through house­break­ing

(6.9 per­cent). Elec­tronic equip­ment was the most com­mon (54 per­cent) type of item stolen dur­ing house­break­ing.

In 2016/17 just over 84 per­cent of house­holds felt safe walk­ing in their neigh­bour­hoods dur­ing the day while 30 per­cent felt safe walk­ing at night.

Many house­holds had ac­tively taken mea­sures to make their homes (51 per­cent) and ve­hi­cles (41 per­cent) more se­cure, nev­er­the­less the fear of crime per­sisted and pre­vented them from en­gag­ing in daily ac­tiv­i­ties such as go­ing to open spa­ces (32 per­cent), al­low­ing chil­dren to play out­side (20 per­cent) and walk­ing to town

(15 per­cent).

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