Crime: What are we worrying about?

Posted by on Oct 19, 2010 | 4 Comments


One of the things we all like to know about is crime; and particularly how bad it is in our area.

Well, as reported by the Speculator elsewhere, North Shore city is the safest in the country, and Devonport is the safest area in North Shore city.

There are a number of obvious reasons for this; for example, the Bardia Rd / Lake Rd intersection is a place many a malcontent has learned to their dismay that one of the perils of being delayed in the Lake Rd traffic is that the local constabulary can prepare a reception party, if your nefarious behaviour back in Devonport attracted attention. Escape across the harbour is similarly risky; the Kea may have a bar, but using the old dear as a getaway vehicle is likely to end up with you behind some.

Why then, are we so concerned about crime in Devonport? Two possible reasons; one good, one bad. 1: As a relatively distinct community with a sense of identity, crime  – when it occurs – feels closer and more personal; a tourist threatened on North Head feels like an attack on us (those dudes are still on the loose by the way). 2: The mainstream media love to tell us gruesome stories on a regular basis to appeal to our fear and voyeurism. Resist this appeal to your base instincts dear reader, and join The Speculator in the realm of facts.

Below are some stats from the North Shore for the first week of October. While you may be initially alarmed at the size of the Devonport/Takapuna piece of pie, rest assured The Speculator has it on good authority that 90% of that activity occurred outside of Devo.

The other two charts relate to the North Shore as a whole.  However, because there are a couple of clear trends, we can possibly extrapolate these down to the suburb level.

Interestingly, the time we perhaps feel the most vulnerable – late at night – is the time we are least likely to be burgled. Given how quiet it is in Devonport at this time, it’s not surprising; a jemmied window in Stanley Point could probably be heard on North Head.

The last chart is harder to extrapolate from, and we’ll need to see a few more weeks of data to understand if Tuesdays and Sundays really are most criminals’ days off.

ScreenHunter_17 Oct. 15 17.56

ScreenHunter_16 Oct. 15 17.11

ScreenHunter_18 Oct. 15 17.56

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One of the barriers to the Police achieving greater success in resolving and preventing crime is the fact that many people are reluctant to dial 111. From being in this situation a few times myself, I can recall three feelings which explain my reluctance. The first was “Oh it’s probably nothing.” The second was “I don’t want to get it involved, ” although as an adult, I find this less of a factor nowadays. The third reason is a sense that by dialling 111, you are admitting to yourself you are in, or are witnessing an emergency, and that in itself can be frightening. A fourth reason often stated is the fear of “getting into trouble” if you waste Police time by ringing in a false alarm. I have also been told that many immigrants from troubled parts of the world, or countries with authoritarian regimes are extremely reluctant to ring the authorities under any circumstances.

The good news is that there are a variety of ways one can contact the Police 24×7, in situations which don’t necessarily involve an immediate threat.

One of these is to call (09) 477 5000. This is a 24 hour hotline which plugs straight into the Police communications centre – a bit like *555, which tends to be used for motoring incidents.

Then there is also CRIMESTOPPERS: 0800 555 111 and  the anonymous information line 0800 107 4636. Any of these will do the job.

It’s always nice to put faces to numbers; and just to bring the statistics alive, here are a few ne’er-do-wells the Police believe could help them with their enquiries. These enquiries all relate to recent fraudulent activity in the local area. All of these individuals were photographed in Takapuna. You never know; one day they may try their luck in Devonport. So if you recognise them or see them, there are a few of ways you can contact the Police.

Coming Up: The Speculator will be publishing a feature on Neighbourhood Support; a quietly effective organisation that works closely with the Police in Devonport to help prevent crime  – by spotting the warning signs.

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  1. king pin says:

    there should be a checkpoint 24/7 to get entry to devonport. i want this sanctioned right away please.

  2. sally monks says:

    Was there a police incident in devonport on saturday night ? the police helicopter flew round and round over the derby st albert rd area for 2 hours from 10 until 12pm with a spotlight on the gardens in the area.

    There have been a couple of reports of an incident from residents in the area;The Speculator will check it out with the police Monday. – Ed

  3. Fred says:

    My personal opinion is that the scumbag element of naval ratings each intake, bring all their undesirable mates down into Devonport to visit them, and they do their pillage on the way home.. So thats another reason the Navy is actually a negative for Devo, not forgetting the drunk driving etc…

  4. Austin says:

    I’m not surprised the Monday is the highest, Devonport considered. My wife has always said that the burglars we get in Devo are professionals from outside the area and arrive under the cover of rubish collection day when there is a lot of collection noise and non-local people moving about.

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