July 26 2014 Latest news:
by Rory Brigstock-Barron
Friday, May 9, 2014
An increase in reported rapes in the borough is a sign that victims feel more confident in going to the police, Islington’s top policeman has said.
Instances of reported rape went up by nearly 23 per cent from 88 to 108 between March 2013 and March 2014 while sexual offences also increased by 10pc.
Islington borough commander Det Chf Sup Gerry Campbell said that the figures were an encouraging sign that the “Yewtree effect”, the inquiry into Jimmy Saville’s sexual offences, was giving victims the confidence to come forward and work with police. He also stressed the importance of victims of rape victims reporting offences as soon as possible in order to give officers the best chance of achieving a conviction.
The increase comes against a backdrop of an overall drop of 12pc in crime in Islington, well above the London-wide reduction of 6pc.
Reports of rape across the capital went up by 32pc while sexual offences rose by 4.5pc.
Det Chf Sup Campbell said: “The publicity around Operation Yewtree is very welcome as it gives victims the confidence to come forward.
“We don’t set reduction targets for rape and sexual offences, it’s about securing trust and confidence of victims to come forward and report victimisation and crime. Our aspiration is that they report crimes as quickly as possible so we can work with them to gather the best possible evidence from the scene.”
Mary Mason, chief executive officer of Solace Women’s Aid in Brewery Road, Holloway, said the charity had also dealt with an increase over the last year.
She said: “The Jimmy Savile case and other high profile prosecutions have encouraged more survivors to come forward which we see as very positive.
“However, at the same time there has also been a decrease in the numbers brought to trial for rape offences.
“It is crucial that women who come forward are believed and supported through the process.”
A total of 24,532 crimes were recorded in the borough over the last year compared with 27,865 the year before. Robbery was down 23pc on the year before with 897 cases recorded, while there were 30 cases of gun crime compared with 46 over the previous 12 months. Burglary rose by 8pc with St Mary’s ward seeing a 59.5pc increase.
Det Chf Sup Campbell urged all residents in the borough to register their belongings on immobilise.com to increase the chance of recovery.
n For an in depth analysis of crime stats in your ward go to met.police.uk/crimefigures/