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Saturday, 27 April, 2002, 13:16 GMT 14:16 UK
Violent crime soars in north Wales
Police graphic
Violent crime in north Wales has increased while detection rates have fallen, according to the latest police performance figures.

The statistics revealed violent crime had rocketed by 36% in the last year whilst the forces detection rate was 28%.

North Wales Police Chief Constable Richard Brunstrom
Chief Constable Brunstrom promises action

At a meeting on Friday, members of the North Wales Police Authority heard how vehicle crimes had risen by seven percent - despite a campaign to reduce the number of offences.

In response to the figures Chief Constable, Richard Brunstrom, promised to prepare a "full and detailed report".

He said the force had to get to grips with the problems and carry out a full analysis of the situation to see what needed to be done.

We've got more police now in north Wales than there have ever been, but there seems to be less than ever actually on the beat

Elfyn Williams, police authority member

However, he told the authority's performance review committee in Colwyn Bay that burglary rates were among the lowest in England and Wales.

Conwy County Councillor and member of the police authority, Elfyn Williams, said the way in which officers were deployed had to be addressed.

"We've got more police now in north Wales than there have ever been, but there seems to be less than ever actually on the beat," he said.

"I have people phoning me up saying there are so many police sitting on the A55 catching people speeding with their speed guns there are not enough on the streets."

North Wales Police
1,500 officers employed
1,200 beat constables
57 officers retiring in 2002
104 promised over three years
Force covers six counties
Earlier this year plans to recruit more police officers in north Wales were given the green light.

In Feburary the police authority approved proposals to put extra bobbies on the beat, using council tax increases.

The move could see weekly taxes in the region rise by around 5p.

Eighteen extra officers are now due to join the 56 which were already set to enter the force in 2002 under a 22p weekly increase already approved by the Home Office.

The posts will complement that new injection of staff in a bid to ease pressure on the force's crime fighters.

More news from north east Wales
See also:

04 Feb 02 | Wales
Police force recruits online
15 Feb 02 | Wales
Beat bobbies plan attacked
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