Your local NZ National Party politician probably won’t admit it but it’s been five years since the police budget has been increased and the strain is starting to show.
Statistics are showing resolution rates are decreasing, despite a supposed decrease in recorded crime (more of that in a minute). It seems the thin blue line has become an elastic band stretched to breaking point, as crime continues to spin out of control in New Zealand. You won’t find the evidence in the reported crime stats but in the resolution rates.
According to an article published on-line by the NZ news site Stuff.co.nz
“Police are taking, on average, more than a year to solve burglaries – an increase on last year of more than 100 days.
And that has led detectives to say their ranks are so stretched that “the rubber band is not far off breaking”.
Of the 51,532 burglaries recorded nationwide in the 2013-14 financial year, just 13 per cent were solved, crime statistics show.
Just over 22.3 per cent of the 122,206 thefts from cars were solved in the same period.
Police annual figures show the average amount of time spent on solving all crimes is increasing, and the force is not meeting its performance standards.
The average time taken to solve “volume crime” – which includes burglary, theft, and unlawful taking of vehicles – jumped from an average 271 days in 2012-13 to 388 days in the last financial year.
A senior detective with more than 20 years’ experience in investigations attributed the problem to the thin blue line feeling slimmer: “Everyone is consistently under increasing pressure…” more here
But the devil lies in the detail of the comments section, from which the following were chosen
Ex-police staffer on the lowering of burglary stats
What the general public do not know is that the police budget has not increased for over 5 years. The police are not allowed to comment.
As an ex member I can tell u that ther has been cost cutting throughout the whole Police department. Crime is recoded e.g. If there is a burglary and nothing is taken it is recoded to either unlawfully on property or wilful damage ( should damage be done during entering) this has the effect of lowering the burglary stats. So then it can be claimed that burglaries have dropped. This practise follows through to all areas of crime. This is not that fault of the Police, but the pressure from government. There are some amazing officers who are doing there best…but are becoming dissolutioned with the system. Don’t hold the Police department accountable, but the government.
“No leads to go on” excuse
In three separate incidents I’ve had my car broken into, my car stolen, and my house burgled while I was asleep in my bed. In each incident, the Police response was always “there’s nothing we can do with no leads to go on.” Fair enough.
The “too hard” ones go straight to the bottom of the pile. There aren’t enough resources to go around and that’s why the statistics show falling resolution rates. Nobody has enough time to follow through. Successive governments have cut/held the Police budget to breaking point and it’s the victims who are out of luck.
Where there’s a will there’s a way.
Queensland State Government in Australia earlier this year decided to sort out Criminal Gangs which is essentially the myriad of motor cycle gangs that plague Australia and many other countries around the World.
The laws were changed over night, Police resources were thrown at it and what a difference it has made and continues to make to the Crime stats in Queensland. Funnily enough it’s a similar gain that we have seen in New Zealand when resources and priorities were placed on Road Safety.
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Long-time reader of this blog but first time poster. Wanted to agree with a lot of the comments I read about how NZ doesn’t live up to its propaganda and the traps you can find yourself in over hear, plus the Tall Poppy syndrome is alive and well.
I came to NZ back in 2005 as one ‘Brit Cops’ under the NZ First agreement, settled up in Northland as it looked sunny with sand and surf, something a NW England lad like myself rarely get to see. At first I really like the job and my colleges (it help that my boss was a South African immigrant himself). So I overlooked the fact that my UK training and experience was ignored and i was virtually considered a probationer, or that fact that my colleagues were so amateurish in their work I felt like a member of the cast of “Live on Mars” (UK Original version) stuck in the 1970s.
The level of incompetence is unbelievable and any suggestion to try something new (to them) is treated with scorn. I’ve never seen the levels of repetitive drink driving and family violence I’ve seen in NZ and I spent 10 years in UK Policing. As for the crime statistics their a work of fiction worthy of a Booker prize! There is a huge criminal underclass in this country and everyone knows who they are but aren’t prepare to do anything meaningful about them due to ‘political correctness’, meanwhile they rape, rob, harm and kill with almost impunity…read more
‘Illegally recoding burglaries’
Acting Police Minister Judith Collins has admitted knowing Counties Manukau police officers illegally recoded 700 crimes to make them disappear, but didn’t pass the information on.
Police are in the spotlight after revelations five officers in the south Auckland district downgraded burglary offences so they wouldn’t appear among the crime statistics.
Disciplinary action was taken against the staff involved in the activity, which spanned three years from 2009 to 2012. The most senior officer has since left the force, Counties Manukau district commander Superintendent John Tims has confirmed.
He says it was not a case of officers being pressured to make crime statistics look better…source 3 News
“A cardiologist who attacked his male partner has escaped conviction partly because of a shortage of specialists…
We’d like to hear what the insurance companies think about crime in New Zealand and whether the numbers are going up or down. All submissions are welcome and will be treated in confidence.