A NEW crime map, detailing offences reported in Northern Ireland, shows the areas around Irish Green Street, the Edenmore Road and Main Street to have been Limavady’s crime hotspots in recent times.
The new crime maps detailing offences reported to the PSNI on a street by street basis have been launched this week, with members of the public now able to assess how safe or otherwise an area is using the postcode search service.
The maps, which are updated on a monthly basis, outline data on 11 categories of offence - burglary; anti-social behaviour; robbery; vehicle crime; violent crime; public disorder and weapons; shoplifting; criminal damage and arson; other theft; drugs; and other crime. The resource also provides contact details for neighbourhood police officers working in each area. Northern Ireland has been incorporated into an internet site already providing the crime mapping service for England and Wales.
Using the service to examine Limavady, a trend appears which shows around three areas where the most crimes have been reported in recent months, although the most recent data available is from October with no figures for November or December.
One of the locations is an area between the Scroggy Road and the Edenmore Road, covering a large portion of Limavady and encompassing Anderson Crescent, Drumachose Park, Edenvale and other estates. In October 2012, the most recent month displayed on the map, there were 25 crimes in the location, shown on the map between the Edenmore Road and the Scroggy Road.
Another area which has shown a higher proportion of crimes in Limavady is a number of areas in and around Main Street. In October 2012, there were 23 crimes in that location.
Borough wide, there were 30 crimes in the area in and around Ballykelly, three in Greysteel, two in and around Myroe, seven in the area in and around Magilligan including the caravan site, and 25 in Dungiven. In Ballykelly, the most crimes were reported in the Kings Lane area, with a total of seven in October this year.
Of the seven crimes in the wider Magilligan area in October, the majority were reported to have occured in and around the caravan site at Benone, with five shown on the new interactive map. In Dungiven, the highest number of crimes occurred in the estates just off the Garvagh Road, with six reported to police in October 2012 in the Ard Na Small estate alone.
Chief Constable Matt Baggott said the new interactive crime maps, which can be used to view any area in Northern Ireland, are part of the PSNI’s drive to place the community at the heart of its service. He said he hoped it would increase interaction between police and the public.
“Over the past number of years, we have worked hard to place our ‘Policing with the Community’ ethos at the centre of how we deliver our services to everyone across Northern Ireland.
“This new website has been designed to provide the public with the latest information about crime and anti-social behaviour in their local areas, right down to street level. We want this information to help promote informed engagement between the public, their local neighbourhood police officers and partner organisations to identify local solutions to local issues.
“Our priority throughout the development of this new facility has been to ensure that the privacy of victims and individuals is protected, so we have worked closely with the guidance from the Information Commissioner’s Office to ensure that all necessary safeguards are in place, and that all crime information is anonymised before being uploaded.
“While overall crime figures across Northern Ireland are at the lowest for many years, we can all play our part in driving crime down even further. This new service, which is updated monthly, is linked to local neighbourhood police team webpages; where people can also find other useful information about their local neighbourhood policing team, planned events for their area and community safety information. There are also links to information from other agencies and partners.
“I hope this will encourage even greater cooperation and interaction between police and the public, whether that’s by direct contact with local neighbourhood policing teams, at neighbourhood meetings or through local Police and Community Safety Partnerships,” Chief Constable Baggott said.