Part of: Crime and Disorder

Related to: [[Children’s Safeguarding]], Alcohol, [[Probation]], Youth Offending, Domestic Abuse, Hate Crime and Hate Incidents, Night Time Economy, Road Traffic Collisions, Safeguarding Adults, Substance Misuse

Key Data

  • There were10,099 recorded crimes in Bath and North East Somerset in 2011-2012. This equates to 56.2 crimes per 1000 of the population and is 5% reduction in recorded crimes compared to the previous year, 2010-2011.
  • Recorded violent crimes against the person had decreased from 14.4 to 9.1 per 1,000 of the population in 2012-2013.
  • The night time economy (NTE) is a significant generator of crime. Over half of all serious violent crimes relate to the NT. Like other cities, Bath city centre is a hotspot for NTE-related crime and anti-social behaviour.
  • Antisocial Behaviour, speeding traffic and parking infringements are consistently highlighted as primary priorities for communities.

What does the data say?

Data about Bath and North East Somerset in the Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Needs Assessment – October 2012 1

There were10,099 recorded crimes in Bath and North East Somerset in 2011-2012. This equates to 56.2 crimes per 1000 of the population and is 5% reduction in recorded crimes compared to the previous year, 2010-2011.

These 10,099 represent 8.7% of the total crimes in Avon and Somerset in 2011-2012, making up the smallest proportion of crimes out of all the areas within Avon and Somerset. As well as Bath and North East Somerset, Avon and Somerset covers, Bristol, Somerset (East), Somerset West, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire.

Recorded violent crimes against the person had decreased from 14.4 to 9.1 per 1,000 of the population in 2012-2013. 2

Although crime deprivation is generally lower than the national average across Avon and Somerset, the indices highlight pockets within each district there are 11 Lower Super Output Areas (each comprising around 1,500 residents) in Bath and North East Somerset that fall within the most deprived (20%) nationally.

The night time economy (NTE) is a significant crime generator or crime. Over half of all serious violent crimes relate to the NT. Like other cities, Bath city centre is a hotspot for NTE-related crime and anti-social behaviour. In Somerset, NTE-related crime is more widespread across town centres and high streets, making it more difficult to manage strategically because of its sporadic nature. The tourism industry also contributes considerably to NTE violent crime in these areas.

There were 130 Juvenile First Time Entrants into the Criminal Justice System in Bath and North East Somerset in 2010-2011, this equates to 800 per every 100,000 10-17 year olds. This was a 20% reduction from 2010.

What does the community say?

Views on crime and neighbourhood issues in Bath and North East Somerset, as outlined in the Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Needs Assessment 3

There are a number of mechanisms currently in place in Bath and North East Somerset to communicate, consult and engage with local communities on matters relating to crime, community safety and criminal justice. These include:

  • neighbourhood beat surgeries
  • PACT (Partners and Communities Together) forums
  • victim surveys
  • community engagement events
  • panels
  • dedicated focus groups.

These exercises have consistently identified a number of key issues that remain priorities for local residents. The primary neighbourhood priorities identified via this process are:

  • Anti-social Behaviour (ASB) - consistently highlighted as the main neighbourhood priority, this can incorporate a diverse range of issues from criminal behaviour through to low level nuisance or rowdy behaviour
  • Speeding Traffic – consistently highlighted as a primary priority for communities.
  • Parking – consistently highlighted as a primary priority.

Table 1: PACT Priorities in Bath and North East Somerset

 

 

Responses

1

Traffic - Speeding

59

2

Other/ not specific

59

3

Traffic - Parking

46

4

Traffic systems / road works

38

5

ASB non-specific

29

 

 

 

When discussing fear of crime in Bath and North East Somerset the Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Needs Assessment states that:

  • Older people (26% of those aged 70 or over feeling very or fairly unsafe in their area at night)
  • Young people (22% of secondary pupils, 29% of male primary school pupils and 44% of female primary school pupils afraid of going to school because of bullying a least sometimes (Pupil Voices – Schools Health Unit 2011) 4

What do the Police Say?

Level 1 BANES Strategic Threat Assessment - May 2012 5

Avon and Somerset Constabulary developed a Level 1 BANES Strategic Threat Assessment. This assessment provides an overview of the current long-term crime issues affecting Bath and North East Somerset.

The purpose of the strategic assessment is to:

  • Review and establish priorities
  • Set a control strategy and formulate an intelligence requirement driven though the Performance and Tasking (PAT) process
  • Indicate where resources are required

The assessment was primarily based upon data contained within the force crime database (Guardian Crime) and intelligence system (Guardian). Other sources of information include, regional and national intelligence products (e.g. problem profiles, subject profiles); analysis of the Organised Crime Group (OCG) map and liaison with units and key individuals within the force.

The May 2012 Strategic Threat Assessment was also based on a re-assessment of the previous strategic assessment produced in June 2011. Where findings in the June 2011 assessment were still valid they were included in the May 2012 assessment, but were updated to incorporate current data.

The period 1 April 2011 to 31 March 2012 was used in most cases to determine annual changes in offending.

Key Terms

ABH - actual bodily harm - minor injury, such as bruising, inflicted on a person by the deliberate action of another, considered less serious than grievous bodily harm.

Acquisitive crime – domestic burglary (residence), theft of a motor vehicle, theft from a motor vehicle and robbery (people and business).

ASB - Anti-social Behaviour was defined by the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 as acting in a manner that caused or was likely to cause harassment, alarm or distress to one or more persons not of the same household. 6

GBH - grievous bodily harm - serious physical injury inflicted on a person by the deliberate action of another.

IMPACT scheme –IMPACT is a multi-agency team who are all working together as one, including:

  • Police
  • Probation
  • Prison officers
  • Drugs workers

The team identify and manage the criminals who are committing most of the robberies, burglaries and thefts in the area. They help reduce the number of crimes being committed by these individuals by helping them to address the issues that are causing them to commit crime such as drug and alcohol misuse. 7

PAT process - Performance and Tasking process

Executive Summary of Level 1 BANES Strategic Threat Assessment - May 2012 8

REDUCE CRIMES OF LOCAL CONCERN

Serious acquisitive crime continues to reduce significantly in BANES due to increased management of offenders through the IMPACT scheme, tactical intervention managed through the PAT process and strategic mechanisms incorporating partnership agencies. These 3 elements are:

  • in ensuring that all the success the district has experienced is maintained Essential to suppress offending into the next crime year to reduce offending further.
  • Crucial in bringing offenders to justice and making local communities safer

The district’s current threats exist in the form of the tiered network of offenders in the Twerton and Southdown area who commit acquisitive crime and coerce others into offending; travelling offenders who target both Bath city centre to commit shoplifting and revel in the night-time economy, and rural towns to commit acquisitive crime; and prolific drug dependant and lifestyle offenders who cause significant harm to the district when they escalate their offending.

The district must ensure the IMPACT scheme, tactical resourcing and strategic multi agency work- streams are supported and preserved not only to support the elements above, but also to evolve with rapid changes within the acquisitive crime arena, specifically:

  • The change in preferred stolen property types influenced by external factors such as increases in theft of jewellery, pedal cycles and metal;
  • Adapting to new technology and its potential for use as evidence and as an intelligence tool;
  • The challenges in detecting offences without the aid of bulk TIC’s due to the suppressing of prolific offenders
  • Ensuring intelligence gaps are filled in relation to stolen property outlets and handlers

ENHANCE THE QUALITY OF LIFE IN OUR COMMUNITIES AND INCREASE PUBLIC CONFIDENCE BY REDUCING ANTI SOCIAL BEHAVIOUR

Anti-social behaviour remains a key threat to the district. Although overall reporting is reducing over the longer term, the district has increased emphasis on tackling offenders and protecting vulnerable victims over recent months which must continue in the forthcoming crime year to protect those in the community affected by ASB. In order to fulfil this responsibility, the district will need to continue with its stringent management of high risk offenders through daily check and test at the Daily Management Meeting and ensure the identification of high risk victims is maintained in conjunction with our partners.

The district will need to remain focussed on the ten identified night time related ASB hotspots in Bath city centre to ensure residents and visitors to the city remain safe and confident in their safety. Both Keynsham and Radstock neighbourhood areas will also need to continue with local plans to tackle ASB that occurs along their respective High Streets and rural towns and villages identified as being hotspots in offending.

Ongoing tactical and strategic intervention addressing acquisitive crime issues will need to continue in the Twerton and Southdown area that in turn will help drive down anti-social behaviour committed by problematic groups of youths in the area. The district will need to be more stringent in its response to chronic street drinkers and beggars in Bath city centre who harass residents and visitors alike but who also impact on the city’s reputation, by locating themselves at transport infrastructure and visitor sites.

CREATE A SAFE, STRONG AND VIBRANT CITY ECONOMY

The night time economy in Bath city centre poses a threat to the district, specifically through ASB, violence, hate crime, criminal damage and theft committed by night time revellers under the influence of alcohol.

The district must continue with identified plans and operations aimed at suppressing offending in the ten identified hotspots throughout periods of seasonal increase with increased emphasis placed on liaison with notorious nightclubs and pubs to promote responsible drinking. Engaging with Bath University to ensure awareness of the risks of drinking heavily are highlighted, and local taxi companies to ensure revellers vacate the city centre safely is paramount. Using robust licensing visits and utilising a multi-agency approach to problem locations should help collectively solve these issues. These processes will also ensure serious and major crimes including rapes and GBH remain a rarity.

INCREASE PROTECTION OF THE MOST VULNERABLE VICTIMS OF CRIME

Numbers of reported serious and major crimes in BANES remains relatively low. The district will need to maintain its high standard of investigating each offence thoroughly to ensure offenders are brought to justice in turn reducing the harm that they pose to the most vulnerable of victims.

Although current detection rates generally meet the targets set, the district should seek to improve the rate of offenders brought to justice in GBH and ABH offences, aiming to lead the force as demonstrated within other areas of major crime such as robbery and sexual offences.

MINIMISE THE HARM THAT SUBSTANCE MISUSE CAUSES

Targeting main dealers and disrupting the market will present great opportunities to reduce levels of priority crimes and maximise asset recovery. Enhancing relationships and increasing referrals to drug and alcohol services providers will help have a more focused approach to targeting identified users and assist in having a more targeted intelligence gathering approach to suppliers

Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Needs Assessment – October 2012 9

Avon and Somerset’s newly elected Police and Crime Commissioner is required to issue a Police and Crime Plan1 setting out their police and crime objectives for their term in office and the resources that will be made available to deliver those objectives. The Commissioner’s manifesto commitments will be at the heart of the Plan.

Effective commissioning will also rely on an on-going analysis of local intelligence and an understanding of need, risk and threat. The information that informs this picture sits across a variety of agencies, each of which play an important role in tackling and reducing the impact of crime and ASB on individuals and communities in the new commissioning environment.

As well as Bath and North East Somerset, there are five other policing districts across Avon and Somerset, these are Bristol, South Gloucestershire, Somerset East, Somerset West and North Somerset. Policing districts are divided into neighbourhood areas that are managed locally by Neighbourhood Inspectors.

Each unitary authority and the County Council have a Community Safety Partnership, Youth Offending Team and Drug and Alcohol Action Team. There are six Magistrates Courts (Bristol, North Avon, Bath, North Somerset, Taunton and Yeovil), two Crown Courts in the Avon and Somerset area (Bristol and Taunton), and five prisons (Bristol, Eastwood Park, Leyhill, Shepton Mallet and Ashfield Young Offenders Institute).

The Police and Crime Needs Assessment brings together a breadth of multi-agency knowledge in order to provide a comprehensive, accessible and holistic overview of the crime, community safety and criminal justice issues, needs, risks and threats across the Avon and Somerset Constabulary area.

The document does not provide recommendations but explores considerations and insights that will support the Commissioner in consultation with the Chief Constable and Police and Crime Panel in deriving the priorities, feasibility and practicalities of the Police and Crime Plan. The assessment will be updated as appropriate to reflect the continually changing policing and partner landscape.

  • 1. Police Authority and Avon and Somerset Constabulary (2012)Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Needs Assessment – October 2012
  • 2. Public Health England (2014) Bath and North East Somerset, http://www.apho.org.uk/resource/view.aspx?QN=HP_RESULTS&GEOGRAPHY=C7 
  • 3. Police Authority and Avon and Somerset Constabulary (2012)Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Needs Assessment – October 2012
  • 4. Police Authority and Avon and Somerset Constabulary (2012) Draft Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Needs Assessment – September 2012
  • 5. Avon and Somerset Constabulary (2012) Level 1 BANES Strategic Threat Assessment- May 2012
  • 6. Police Authority and Avon and Somerset Constabulary (2012) Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Needs Assessment – October 2012
  • 7. Avon and Somerset Constabulary (2012) IMPACT - Reducing re-offending in Avon and Somerset, http://www.avonandsomerset.police.uk/operations_and_initiatives/impact.aspx (viewed 02/05/13)
  • 8. Avon and Somerset Constabulary (2012) Level 1 BANES Strategic Threat Assessment -May 2012
  • 9. Police Authority and Avon and Somerset Constabulary (2012)Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Needs Assessment – October 2012