Fall in violent crime across Northamptonshire during Christmas period


Violent and alcohol related crime during the Christmas period across the county fell by more than 20 percent according to Northamptonshire Police.

In the week up to and including New Year’s Eve, there were 152 recorded violent offences. This compares to 193 during the same period in 2012. The figure is 34 per cent lower than the number recorded in 2011.

Northamptonshire Police has put the reduction down to a ‘powerful campaign’ during the Christmas and New Year period to address violent and alcohol-related crime.

Chief Inspector Dave Spencer, the force lead for alcohol licensing and harm reduction, said: “I’m really pleased with the Christmas and New Year policing effort around violent crime, supported by a high-profile campaign with some very powerful messages about the impact excessive alcohol can have.

“Traditionally the week around New Year sees the highest levels of violence of any week in the year, but this time the trend has been bucked.

“While the number of violent offences recorded was higher than during an average week, it was nevertheless down from 193 for the same period last year to 152 this year.

“It’s reassuring that the effort we have made, in partnership with the licensing trade, to improve standards of retailing, encourage responsible drinking and to take a less tolerant approach to drunkenness appears to have paid off. This, alongside the circulation of very stark messages about the link between alcohol and violence, have really made a difference.

“We are now supporting ‘Dry January’ and continue to encourage people to think intelligently about their relationship with alcohol.”

The campaign was supported by visuals and a radio campaign with the underlying message that too much alcohol could ruin Christmas.

In addition, social media was used to encourage victims and perpetrators of domestic violence to get help and support, and to help drive debate on the subject.

On one day, there were 25,000 Facebook views of various posts on the subject, with numerous comments and shares.

Police and Crime Commissioner Adam Simmonds said: “Our tactics are clearly working. The effects of irresponsible drinking are a huge drain on police resources, costing Northamptonshire Police nearly £1.5m every year.

“One of my main focuses is to ensure all agencies are working together to tackle alcohol-related crime and this is clearly beginning to pay dividends.”