PEN­SION­ERS TURN­ING TO A LIFE OF CRIME

Num­ber of of­fend­ers over the age of 65 is up by 81% in parts of county

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - FRONT PAGE - by KATY CLIFTON katy.clifton@trin­i­tymir­ror.com Twit­ter: @Katy_Clifton1

THE num­ber of el­derly peo­ple involved in crimes in Bucks has sky­rock­eted since 2014, with an in­crease of 81% in some parts of the county.

Fig­ures pro­vided by Thames Val­ley Po­lice show a dra­matic rise in crimes in­volv­ing a per­son aged 65 or over with ‘of­fender’ or ‘sus­pect’ sta­tus – crimes in­clud­ing drug traf­fick­ing, rape and ar­son.

In the county’s lo­cal po­lice au­thor­i­ties, there has been an 81% in­crease in el­derly peo­ple involved in crimes in Ayles­bury Vale, a 62% in­crease in Chiltern and South Bucks and a 16% in­crease in Wy­combe.

On top of these fig­ures, the rape fig- ures have quadru­pled and the amount of other sex­ual of­fences have jumped from 11 com­mit­ted in 2014 to 25 last year.

In 2016, there were 190 crimes com­mit­ted which involved a per­son over the age of 65 and 23 of those were com­mit­ted by of­fend­ers or sus­pects aged be­tween 80 and 100.

A spokesman for Thames Val­ley Po­lice, said they are com­mit­ted to tack­ling crime in the area.

He said: “Thames Val­ley Po­lice treats all re­ports of crime ex­tremely se­ri­ously and en­cour­ages any­one who has been the vic­tim of a crime, or who has wit­nessed one, to con­tact us.

“Crime lev­els in the Thames Val­ley area re­main low, with pub­lic con­fi­dence and vic­tim sat­is­fac­tion high.

“The force works to ar­rest, charge and se­cure pros­e­cu­tions against all of­fend­ers, re­gard­less of age, when­ever it is in the pub­lic in­ter­est to do so.”

The fig­ures, ac­quired by the Bucks Advertiser, show that crimes in­volv­ing vi­o­lence with in­jury have more than dou­bled in the past two years, a jump from 17 in 2014 to 44 in 2016.

On top of this, crimes in­volv­ing vi­o­lence with­out in­jury have jumped from 36 to 49 in two years.

Kitty Nor­well, fundrais­ing and com­mu­ni­ca­tions of­fi­cer at Age UK, sug­gested one fac­tor which may have con­trib­uted to­wards the ris­ing num­bers is pop­u­la­tion in­crease.

She said: “As stated in the Buck­ing­hamshire Pop­u­la­tion Pro­jec­tions, the great­est per­cent­age in­crease in pop­u­la­tion will be in the older peo­ple’s pop­u­la­tion – 38.7%.”

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