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Thursday, 8 June, 2000, 10:36 GMT 11:36 UK
Murders up as overall crime falls
Strathclyde Police headquarters
The figures are "testament" to officers' work
The number of recorded crimes in Scotland's biggest police force area has dropped and the detection rate has gone up.

But violent crime in Strathclyde has increased, along with the number of murders and drug deaths.

The statistics are revealed in the penultimate annual report for 1999/2000 from chief constable, John Orr, who retires next year.

Mr Orr described the figures as encouraging and said they were "testament to the partnership approach adopted by the force and the sheer hard work and dedication by all staff".

"It is arguably the most successful year in the history of the force," he said.

John Orr
John Orr: "Encouraging" figures
The police have continued with a number of high-profile clampdowns in the past year. Part of the increase in knife crime is being attributed to the greater emphasis it has been given in the through special operations.

Despite the extra operations the number of constables on the beat has remained the same at about 5,500.

Drug deaths increased by 46% from 100 to 146, while a record 37m of drugs was seized, the highest value by any Scottish force.

Improved detection

Every murder was solved last year, as the force recorded its highest-ever detection rate.

Mr Orr said 43.43% of the recorded crimes were solved in 1999/2000, the highest detection rate in the 25-year history of the force and the seventh successive annual increase in overall crime detection.

Key figures from the report include:

  • Overall reported crime dropped by 6.7% to 205,714 - a decrease of almost 15,000 crimes on the previous tally of 220,576

  • The crime rate for 1999/2000 represents a reduction of 36% on Strathclyde's highest-ever crime figure of 312,429, which was recorded in 1991

  • The number of murders committed in the force area increased by 44% from 59 to 85, yet they were all solved

  • Housebreaking has fallen by 11.4% on last year's figure - a drop of 3,458 crimes to 26,910

  • Crimes of dishonesty are at a 10-year low

  • Robberies fell by 7.7%

  • Murder is up by 44%, attempted murder up by 0.85% and serious assault up 3.59%

  • There has been an increase in the numbers of people carrying offensive weapons and bladed pointed instruments - up 4.45% and 29.48% respectively.

  • Crimes of indecency fell by 12.9%

  • Theft and attempted theft of and from vehicles dropped by 9.6% on last year's figure

  • Vandalism dropped by 2%

Councillor Bashir Maan, convener of Strathclyde joint police board, said: "At a time when there is a perception of rampant crime it is very important to stress the reality.

"Overall crime levels in this force area have actually fallen, and moreover, in relation to crimes that are committed, there has never been a higher detection rate."

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