Armidale has seen a significant drop in major crime, in line with state trends associated with a Covid-related crime lull.
In four of the 13 major crime categories - break and enter dwelling, vehicle theft, steal from motor vehicle and malicious damage to property - the Cathedral city saw decreases by well over 10 per cent in the 12 months leading up to September 2021.
According to the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research (BOCSAR), Armidale's biggest category of crime in decline was vehicle thefts.
There was a dramatic 35.6 per cent decrease from the year before last: 87 vehicles were reported stolen in 2020, but just 56 were reported this time around.
Residents made 190 complaints to police about their cars being broken into this year, which showed a decrease of 13.5 per cent from 2020, where 229 reports were made.
Reports of people breaking and entering into homes dropped by 27.2 per cent, with 225 incidents reported last year in comparison to 309 reports in 2020.
And the last category declining in real times was malicious damage. Dropping by 14.2 per cent, 363 reports were made against the previous year's 423.
While these types of crimes were visibly reduced, all other categories - murder, domestic and non-domestic assaults, sexual assault and sexual touching, robbery, break and enter non-dwelling, steal from retail store and other places - remained stable, and none rose in prevalence.
These trends are in line with the NSW experience as a whole, attributed to the Covid pandemic by BOCSAR's executive director Jackie Fitzgerald.
"Violent crime had returned to pre-pandemic levels by June 2021," she explained.
"[S]ince July violent offences again declined following the introduction of COVID-19 containment measures."
Property offending also fell sharply during 2020 lockdown and was still noticeably lower than pre-pandemic levels in June 2021. In line with the second lockdown property crime again fell sharply and the level of property crime in NSW is currently at the lowest level on record.
In the 24 months to September 2021 none of the 13 major crime categories were trending upwards, eight were trending downwards and the remaining five were stable.
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