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Sexual assaults up around Durham

By Chris Jones/The Oshawa Express

Sexual assaults jumped 32 per cent in Durham Region in 2018, according to latest statistics from the police.

According to a recent report to the Durham Police Services Board, there were 77 sexual assaults reported in the region this year.

Reports of violent crime are up three per cent overall in Durham, which police officials credit to the increased number of reported sexual assaults.

It also shows an eight per cent increase in number of assaults with a weapon with an additional 25 being reported, and an increase in level 1 assaults, as it has gone up six per cent with an additional 62 reported.

However, robberies have dropped by 25 per cent throughout the region, with 63 less reported.

The number reported of property crimes increased by three per cent as well.

This is driven by an increases in theft under $5,000, and fraud calls. Reports of theft under $5,000 increased by 16 per cent, with an additional 318 reports, with reports of fuel theft making up one quarter of the occurrences.

Fraud calls were up by 19 per cent, with 285 more reports when compared to 2017.

Vehicle theft has risen by 12 per cent with an additional 38 incidents, however, the report attributes these increases to an increase in online reporting.

While property crime has risen overall, the number of thefts from vehicles has decreased, down 15 per cent with 267 fewer reported incidents, while reports of mischief fell 20 per cent with 331 fewer reported incidents.

The report also notes that citizen calls for service remained almost the same, but there has been a six per cent increase in emergency calls for service.

The report credits this to an increase in domestic dispute calls.

The report also notes that the median response time remains around seven minutes and 30 seconds.

With the increase in crime, there has also been an increase amount of solved crimes, as the violent crime clearance rate has remained consistent at around 75 per cent, and the property crime clearance rate at around 25 per cent.