New Zealand’s Under Resourced Police. Insider Says “Creative Accounting” Pushing Down Crime Stats

Crime stats in NZ are a work of fiction

Crime stats in NZ are a work of fiction

Have you noticed that every time there is a serious crime in the papers someone will use it an opportunity to tell you that recorded crime is on the decrease in New Zealand?

Have you ever wondered why you’re seeing crime all around you, especially youth crime, yet you’re being told that New Zealand is getting safer?

Creative Accounting

The article below ties in very well with what one of our readers has told us about policing in another area of New Zealand (read British Cop in Northland: NZ’s “Crime Statistics a Work of Fiction”). His story confirmed what many people in New Zealand already suspect – crime statistics are a work of fiction and a criminal underclass has free rein over the country.

According to today’s report from the national newspaper site Stuff.co.nz Cop Blows Whistle  a source in the police force claims

Police bosses are pushing staff to drive down reported crime rates and staff play the system to reduce statistics.”

In 2011, a national operating strategy was implemented in the department known as Prevention First. It aims to drive reported crime down 13 per cent by 2014/2015.

Much of the push was based on statistics, the source said. “The only stats you can’t twist in the system are deaths, such as road toll – everything else does get twisted. A lot of crime doesn’t get reported because people are seeing, well, there’s no point – and that’s true.” The source gave examples, such as an informant who doesn’t wish to pursue a crime. “It will get turned into a 2i or an information job. And information doesn’t show up as a stat because it’s not a crime, it’s just something there, so they’ll do that.”

Crime is so frequent in New Zealand that people simply don’t bother reporting much of it? Perhaps the paucity of police officers and years of budget freezes has got something to do with that.

A controversial on-call police regime which has a lone, off-duty officer covering a massive swathe of the Waikato, is under review.

The development comes after a serving police officer, who asked not to be named, slammed resourcing for rural cops, highlighting fears that someone would have to die before there was a change.

Years of budget freezes have also driven down morale, the source said.

In March last year the two on-call officers covering Matamata and Morrinsville were cut to one, despite staff opposition, Waikato-Bay of Plenty Police Association director Wayne Aberhart said. He believes it was a cost-saving measure in an already stretched police force.

“There was a review late last year but I wasn’t privy to that,” Aberhart said. “There’s a new person in charge and he is reviewing the matter completely. I trust he will be complete and thorough and I’ve had his assurance that he will be thorough.”

“Unhappiness” among the ranks sparked it, Aberhart said…

Now another police source has spoken out of frustration and concern for fellow officers’ safety. “The way we see this is the only time there’s going to be change is when someone ends up dead,” the source said.

“We’re just hoping it’s not a cop or a member of the public, but that’s what we’re foreseeing.”

…”The other night you had one member in Cambridge Police Station covering Te Awamutu, Otorohanga, Te Kuiti, and [the officer] got sent to a job at Matamata – that’s a huge patch for one person Aberhart said Waikato Police were operating on “bare bones” after four years of budget freezes.

“I’ve been here for 14 years in the Waikato and one of the things I’ve always thought, but I’ve never had any statistics to back it up, is that Waikato is under resourced . . . when there’s a hole in the front line or the front counter, there’s no one to back it up.”

The NZ public had their say on the forum at Trademe.co.nz (click to enlarge).

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Domestic violence stats being kept out of reported crime data

“Police and the government have hit back at “outrageous” claims the force is avoiding domestic violence prosecutions to keep crime statistics low.

Labour made the claims following the release of new data showing police laid charges in just 37,000 cases of domestic violence last year despite investigating 95,000 incidents.

Opposition justice spokesman Andrew Little said he had it on good authority that police were limiting prosecutions to make crime statistics look better.

Frontline police officers who are dealing with all sorts of offences are being told to reduce the number of charges they are laying,” he told Radio New Zealand on Tuesday…” more here

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2 thoughts on “New Zealand’s Under Resourced Police. Insider Says “Creative Accounting” Pushing Down Crime Stats

  1. So what we have here is another typical example of how problems are dealt with in New Zealand.

    If there is an issue LIE ABOUT IT!!!! Don’t actually put any effort into solving the problem, just pretend it doesn’t exist, manipulate the statistics and lie your ass off.

    Of course, the question should be asked: If the New Zealand government is not providing the police with enough funding to do their job properly, does that mean they are deliberately promoting an environment were crime can flourish?

  2. I did not work in the police, but I did work at an insurance company in New Zealand. The amount of claims for things such as burglaries was staggering in places like Auckland. Perhaps more surprisingly was the number of insurance claims for burglaries in rural areas. Insurance statistics are probably a better reflection of overall crime in New Zealand than are the police figures. If anything, insurance figures also understate the number of crimes because poorer people are less likely to have insurance yet they are more likely to become the victims of property crime due to living in areas that have a higher incidence of crime.

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