Crime across Merseyside drops by 13% in year

Chief Constable Serena Kennedy and Police Commissioner Emily Spurrell

Crime across Merseyside has fallen by 13% in the past year, with significant decreases in gun discharges, knife crime and burglary.

The reductions were confirmed yesterday at the Police and Crime Commissioner’s final public Scrutiny Meeting of her term.

The meeting, which reviews Merseyside Police’s progress against the priorities set by Emily Spurrell, showed there were nearly 17,000 fewer crimes in 2023 compared to 2022.

Reviewing the ‘data dashboard’ which aims to give the public greater insight into the work of Merseyside Police, it was also confirmed that firearms discharges decreased by more than 50% in 2023, with knife crime dropping by 13%.

In the same timeframe, residential burglaries were down by more than 17% and theft from members of the public reduced by more than 20%.

The meeting also showed that response times to the public have improved, with emergency 999 calls now being answered on average in just six seconds, compared to 13 seconds a year ago.

Merseyside’s Police Commissioner Emily Spurrell said: “We all want to see less crime in our communities and my final Scrutiny Meeting shows over the past year that’s exactly what we have delivered - fewer crimes committed, less victims and safer communities.

“I’m pleased that the data shows these decreases are already continuing into 2024.

“People also expect the police to pick up the phone quickly when they need them most, so it’s reassuring to see that the time to answer 999 calls has nearly halved over the past year.

“All these results are testament to the hard work of our policing family, and our community safety partners who support this work.

“They demonstrate the resilience, hard work and dedication of Merseyside Police who are achieving all of this, despite the fact we have fewer officers than we used to have, and we continue to battle with budget cuts imposed by the Government.

“While these figures are hugely encouraging, neither the Chief Constable nor I are resting on our laurels, and we’re determined we continue to drive these improvements forward.”

Chief Constable Serena Kennedy said: “It’s incredibly pleasing to see that crime has fallen by 13% in the past year across Merseyside.

“It wouldn’t be possible without the excellent work of officers and staff right across the various departments here at Merseyside Police, all of whom remain totally committed to putting the public first.

“It’s important to remember that these statistics are not just numbers on a page – they represent significantly fewer people in Merseyside suffering at the hands of criminality.

“Of all the crimes that have reduced, an obvious point to highlight is a 50% reduction in firearms discharges. We all know the devastation that this has caused in Merseyside over the years and how it has shattered the lives of so many families and impacted on our communities.

“The significant reduction in firearms discharges last year is testament to the work of the force, in conjunction with its partners and communities, to tackle serious and organised crime and we will continue to be relentless in our approach to removing our streets of guns and those prepared to use them.

“Despite these significant reductions we recognise the devastation that discharging a gun on our streets has, and that one shooting is one too many. As such we need the help of our communities to make our streets safer by being our eyes and ears, and telling us what they know so that we can take positive action. This information is vital if we are to breakdown the organised crime groups who bring misery to our streets.

“It’s also pleasing to see reductions in all crime including knife crime, residential burglaries and theft from members of the public, which I hope we can continue to reduce even further across 2024 because these are incredibly important issues for our communities in Merseyside.

“Members of the public can also be reassured that we are responding to your calls much quicker, with an average of just six seconds before a concerned individual is speaking to a 999 call handler.

“Despite reductions in crime, our determination to keep bringing offenders to justice remains and we refuse to become complacent when communities in Merseyside depend on us to keep them safe. We are committed to continuing to drive crime down and reduce the numbers of victims of crime in Merseyside.”