Car crime in Gateshead has more than doubled in a year, shocking figures have revealed.
Police were made aware of 400 incidents of ‘vehicle crime’ in Gateshead between April and September 2021, but this has skyrocketed to 828 in the same period 2022, a rise of 107%. Northumbria Police define vehicle crime as the theft of or theft from a vehicle.
Crime overall has increased in Gateshead by seven per cent, with a 20% rise in burglaries. A total of 445 break-ins were reported in 2021 but this leapt to 533 by September 2022.
According to Gateshead Council’s community safety manager, Adam Lindridge, these kinds of crimes are expected to increase as the cost of living crisis continues.
Cllr Brenda Clelland, chair of the housing, environment and healthier communities overview and scrutiny committee said: “This kind of crime is an assault on a family’s sustainability. Car crime makes people feel vulnerable.
“Even though it is not violent, it still strikes at someone’s sense of wellbeing. I would like to know if it is concentrated in certain areas.
“We need to do much more investigative work into the why and wherefore’s of car crime”.
Chief Inspector David Carruthers of Northumbria Police said: “As a force, we take all reports of theft seriously and we realise the impact it has on victims. Our officers work hard to identify the trends in vehicle crime so they can target those responsible, and, in recent months we have seen a number of proactive arrests made, with offenders across Whickham, Low Fell and Birtley charged and placed before the courts.
“We will continue to tackle this type of criminality and would ask the public to continue to work with us, by making sure their cars and are kept locked and valuables out of sight, and opportunist thieves deterred. We would also ask that if you do see anyone acting suspiciously, or believe a crime is taking place, you contact us straight away.”