Murdoch police top of class
The Murdoch police sub-district is the best performing within the south metropolitan policing zone, with the lowest overall crime rate despite population growth in its City of Cockburn suburbs and the opening of Fiona Stanley Hospital 18 months ago.
But end-of-financial year figures show crime overall in the Murdoch sub-district was up 4 per cent, according to Murdoch officer-incharge Glenn Swannell.
“All stations are experiencing an increase in domestic violence assaults,” Sen Sgt Swannell said.
“At Murdoch it is up about 28 per cent and part of this is a greater willingness to report domestic violence.
“Non-domestic assaults are also up about 12 per cent and include assaults at the hospital.”
Over a two-year period robberies dropped 52 per cent, burglaries 21 per cent and motor vehicle thefts 26 per cent.
“The whole metro area had experienced a growth in crime so there was a refocussing of efforts to four categories of domestic violence, burglaries, stealing a motor vehicle and theft,” Sgt Swannell said.
“The district started proactive teams and some officers went out with detectives from Fremantle permanently, on a rotation basis, to target the people who are causing the most problems.
“We ran a ‘making it tougher for crooks’ campaign and locally South Lake was a bit of a problem for us.”
Police issued search warrants for the properties of recidivist offenders as part of Operation Secular.
Sgt Swannell said population growth in the Cockburn area would continue, more apartments were planned and the Fremantle Dockers building was due to open next year.
He said there was a proposal for 1200 new apartments near Murdoch Station and Challenger Tafe would draw in more students when its Beaconsfield campus closed.
The spike in crime caused by Fiona Stanley’s opening presented a new situation for the station to deal with.
“The opening of Fiona Stanley Hospital severely impacted on crime in Murdoch, as expected for a new hospital with 6000 people coming in a day,” he said.
He said the sub-district had been able to cater for the increase in crime because the hospital was mainly attended by the 24-7 response unit based at a Bibra Lake factory unit.