Crime in South Yorkshire up by a third last year - and stalking offences soar 192 per cent

Violent crime has soared by 62 per cent in South Yorkshire in the last year
Violent crime has soared by 62 per cent in South Yorkshire in the last year

Crime in South Yorkshire rose 34 per cent last year with violence, stalking, robbery, weapons and public order offences all seeing big increases.

New figures released by the Office for National Statistics showed South Yorkshire experienced the second highest rise in reported offences in the country in the last year - with 36,121 crimes reported to police between October 2016 and September 2017.

Last year there were 141,017 crimes reported in South Yorkshire - a rise of 34 per cent on the year before - the second the highest increase in the country.

Only Durham Constabulary recorded a higher increase with 35 per cent.

There were big rises in stalking and harassment - up 192 per cent; public order offences up 159 per cent; violent attacks - up 62 per cent; robbery - up 46 per cent and possession of weapons - up 43 per cent and sexual offences - up 19 per cent.

The only crimes which fell were drug-related offences, which were down by 15 per cent.

The murder rate remained stable with 14 homicides reported in the county. The Hillsborough stadium deaths recorded following the outcome of the new inquests were excluded from the data along with last year's terror attacks.

The percentage increase in stalking and harassment offences was the highest in England and Wales.

Nationally there were rises in violent attacks, knife crime and robbery compared with the previous year, the Office for National Statistics said.

About 5.3 million crimes were recorded during the 12-month period, up 14 per cent.

Sheffield Heeley MP Louise Haigh, who is shadow policing minister, said: "These shocking figures reveal that the Tories are losing control in the fight against crime.

"The truth is, the public are now being forced to pay the price for the reckless risk the Tories took with public safety when they slashed 20,000 officers.”

“Police numbers are at historic lows, crime is soaring and more and more criminals are walking free."

“This proves you cannot trust the Tories to keep our communities safe. Labour will recruit another 10,000 new police officers and give the police the resources they need to fight crime.”

However, the separate Crime Survey, which is based on people's experiences, suggests crime is falling.

The survey, which is based on interviews with the occupants of 35,000 households in England and Wales, includes crimes that is not reported to the police.

The figures exclude fraud offences which are complied separately.

South Yorkshire Police has been asked to comment on the figures.