Overall crime in Cheshire drops during lockdown but domestic abuse increases significantly

Whilst overall crime in Cheshire has dropped by nearly 35% since April 1st, compared with the same period last year, there have been 450 domestic abuse arrests.

Domestic abuse, burglary and roads policing have been areas of focus for the force in recent weeks with activity across the county to identify and target offenders and take action.

Assistant Chief Constable Jenny Sims said: "Our officers, staff and volunteers have worked tirelessly to protect the people of Cheshire over the course of the pandemic and this hard work will continue.

"Overall crime has dropped by 34.5% since 1 April compared to the same period last year. However, criminals are still committing crime even under the current circumstances and our proactive policing approach has had a significant impact in Cheshire.

"This has ranged from operations targeting business premises and schools to prevent burglaries with the support of the Special Constabulary and increasing our use of stop and search across the county on those suspected of being involved in crime to stop checks on our roads catching travelling criminals and visits to known offenders and victims of domestic abuse.

"The results speak for themselves with many ongoing investigations, positive outcomes at court and vital support provided to victims."

The issue of domestic abuse has remained a priority for the force and across the county. Officers have been visiting victims to asses safeguarding as well as known offenders and those potentially at risk, carrying out checks, targeting those who are wanted for domestic abuse offences and ensuring that Domestic Violence Protection Orders and bail conditions are being adhered to. Across the county, officers have made 450 domestic abuse arrests since 1st April.

There has also been a significant increase in the number charges connected to domestic abuse cases since March 2020 with 285 people charged during the period of 1 April to 14 May.

Working alongside partners as part of the Cheshire-wide 'Open the Door' campaign, which aims to raise awareness of the issue and show people how to recognise the signs, know what to do and have the confidence to take action, the force has been hosting a series of virtual web chats – and these are set to continue.

Checks on key routes across the county are still taking place in order to catch criminals who are using other means to commit offences during the pandemic, supported by the ongoing Fatal 5 campaign.

ACC Sims added: "Each day our officers will remain highly visible within our local communities working to deny criminals the use of Cheshire's roads – and identify anyone committing one of the fatal 5 offences, with a particular focus on speeding, we will prevent those intent on flouting the law from doing so.

"I would like to take this time to thank the residents of Cheshire for their support and reassure them that we will do everything in our power to continue to pursue those who feel that they are above the law. We are out there doing our job and we need the residents of Cheshire to do their job by staying alert, and where possible stay at home."

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