New Home Office statistics have revealed that a shocking 3,025 burglaries went unsolved across Surrey in the year ending June 2023.
This is equivalent to eight burglaries going unsolved in the county every single day.
With 82.2% of burglaries unsolved, the county is in the bottom three of all police forces in England and Wales.
Meanwhile, just 171 cases resulted in a suspect being charged or summonsed in the same time period - accounting for 4.65% of all burglaries in Surrey.
The national figures paint a similarly dire picture. 76% of all burglaries across England and Wales went unsolved in the year ending June 2023, while just 6% of cases resulted in a suspect being charged or summonsed.
Elmbridge’s Liberal Democrats have slammed the Conservative Government for these figures, arguing that years of ineffective resourcing have left local forces overstretched and unable to focus on crimes like burglaries.
This includes taking over 4,500 Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) off the streets since 2015, and assigning just 12% of officers to neighbourhood policing teams.
The party is calling for a new “Burglary Response Guarantee,” under which all domestic burglaries would be attended by the police and properly investigated.
This would be accompanied by a return to proper community policing, where officers are visible, trusted and focused on tackling neighbourhood crime.
Commenting, Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for Esher and Walton, Monica Harding, said:
“Everyone deserves to feel safe in their homes and confident that if they are burgled, the criminal will swiftly face justice. It’s hard for people in Esher and Walton to feel that confidence, thanks to these shocking figures.
“Under the Conservative government, four police stations have shut in Esher and Walton. And in just 18 months between March 2021 and September 2022, 52 PCSOs were taken off Surrey’s streets.
“Yet again, this Conservative Government is failing to even get the basics right on cutting crime. It’s a shame that our communities are paying the price.
“People in Esher and Walton deserve better - which is why the Liberal Democrats will keep fighting to restore proper community policing and implement our Burglary Response Guarantee. It’s the only way to bring an end to this shameful burglar bailout.”
Notes to Editors:
Full data, broken down by police force, is available here. Source: Home Office, Crime outcomes year to June 2023: data tables.
Data on PCSO cuts can be found here, based on Home Office, Police Workforce: England and Wales, Table H7 (various editions).
Data on neighbourhood policing team size can be found here, based on Home Office, Police workforce England and Wales statistics.
Liberal Democrats are calling for a new statutory guarantee that all burglaries must be attended by police and properly investigated.
To implement this guarantee, Liberal Democrats are calling on the Government to:
Return to proper community policing, where officers have the time and resources they need to focus on preventing and solving crime;
Urgently draw up a strategy to tackle the shortage of detectives; and
Set up a new national Online Crime Agency, to better protect people from online crime while freeing up local forces’ time to tackle burglars.