Possession of weapons offences almost doubles as force steps up approach to stop and search

Newly released figures have revealed that Cheshire has seen yet another reduction in crime across the 12 months to June.

Figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) released today (Thursday 19 October) have revealed that crime has fallen in Cheshire for a third consecutive quarter this year.

The county's -3.2% reduction in crime shows that Cheshire continues to buck the national trend, with ONS figures also revealing that England and Wales saw an increase of 2% in the 12 months to June 2023.

Offences such as public order (-15.3%), arson (-11..4%), vehicle theft (-9.3%), criminal damage (-9.2%) and violence against the person (-6.3%) have all seen considerable reductions recently.

Racially and religiously motivated offences in Cheshire also saw a reduction of 8.8%.

However, Cheshire saw a very high increase for possession of weapons offences (+96.1%), which Cheshire Police says is mostly down to the force stepping up their approach when it comes to stop and search - with officers challenging individuals who they believe are intending to cause harm.

Chief Constable Mark Roberts, said "It is great to see that crime continues to fall across our Cheshire communities; this is testament to our hardworking staff and officers who are doing their upmost in keeping the county, and its borders, a hostile place for criminals.

"Just yesterday (Wednesday 18 October), the force carried out Operation Hunted, a day of action bringing together officers and staff from local policing units, the Special Constabulary as well as specialist departments from across the force. They concentrated their efforts in tracking down people suspected of committing crimes in the county, with some cracking results.

"Our officers have also been working closely with the residents and communities they serve everyday by launching initiatives to not only catch offenders and prevent criminal behaviour, but also offer advice and public reassurance to residents and businesses. This includes taking part in the National Safer Business Week, which is currently ongoing.

"We're also stopping and searching more, finding some great wins, like the car that was stopped on the M6 recently for being incorrectly taxed – only for our officers to find a concealed rucksack of cocaine that had an estimated value of between £48,000 - £114,000 inside. The driver now facing time in prison, all because of the diligence of our eagle-eyed officers.

"Overall, these latest figures highlight Cheshire as one of the safest places to live in the country, and I am very proud to recognise the hard work of everyone in the Constabulary."