Recorded criminal incidents

The information outlined in this section represents all criminal incidents recorded in the Police Law Enforcement Assistance Program (LEAP) database, where Victoria Police have recorded a crime prohibited by criminal law. These include crimes that have been reported to police as well as those identified by police. For more information about counting rules, please refer to the Explanatory Notes.

1.1 Key movements in the number and rate of criminal incidents

Victorian criminal incident rate per 100,000 population, 10 year trend

In the last 12 months there were decreases in the number (22,876 incidents) and rate per 100,000 population (7.8%) for criminal incidents. These are the lowest criminal incident figures since the year ending June 2015. Over the last 10 years the number of criminal incidents recorded by Victoria Police has increased 21.8% from 314,463.

1.2 Number of criminal incidents by principal offence category

In order to best represent the type of offence associated with a criminal incident involving multiple offences, the most serious offence within an incident is determined and this becomes the principal offence to represent the incident. For criminal incidents the most serious charge laid is selected and, if no charges were laid, the most serious offence recorded will be selected. Further information on the derivation of a principal offence for a criminal incident can be found in the CSA paper Offence Types – Differences between Recorded Offences and Criminal Incidents, Year ending 31 March 2018.

24 month trend testing - criminal incidents

The CSA uses a 24 month trend test on each offence subdivision and Local Government Area to highlight changes that are statistically significant. The CSA uses the Kendall’s Rank Order Correlation statistical test (or Kendall‘s tau-b) to determine whether a series is trending upwards or downwards over the two years. For more information on the trend test see the Explanatory notes and for the full data set, see the recorded criminal incident data tables in Appendix 2 and Appendix 3.

Over the last 24 months, the major principle offence categories that showed significant upward trends for criminal incidents were:

  • Sexual offences (up 13.3% from 7,631 to 8,644)

The major principal offence categories that showed significant downward trends for criminal incidents were:

  • Property damage (down 4.0% from 36,915 to 35,448)
  • Burglary/Break and enter (down 16.3% from 49,343 to 41,319)
  • Justice procedures (down 7.3% from 8,011 to 7,428)

All other major principal offence categories did not show a significant trend over the last 24 months.

12 month movements - criminal incidents

In the last 12 months criminal incidents with a principal offence of Crimes against the person increased by 2.1% or 1,298 incidents. This was driven by a 13.3% or 1,013 incidents increase in Sexual offences incidents to 8,644 in the year ending June 2018. Assault and related offences made up the largest proportion of Crimes against the person incidents (62.8%) followed by Sexual offences (13.9%) and Stalking, harassment and threatening behaviour (11.4%).

The number of criminal incidents with a principal offence of Property and deception offences decreased by 22,552 incidents or 8.8% in the last 12 months, driven by an 8.5% (12,446 incidents) decrease in Theft to 133,725.

Compared to the previous year, the number of criminal incidents with a principal offence of Drug offences decreased by 3.2% (495 incidents). This was driven by the category Drug use and possession which decreased by 2.6% (302 incidents).

The number of criminal incidents with a principal offence of Justice procedures offences decreased by 0.6% (258 incidents) in the last 12 months. This was driven by a 7.3% (583 incidents) decrease in Justice procedures incidents.
 

Victorian criminal incidents recorded by principal offence category and quarter in the past 12 months

5 year trend - criminal incidents

In the five years to June 2018 the number of criminal incidents with a principal offence of Property and deception offences has fluctuated with a peak in the year ending June 2016. While these offence types have decreased in the last year the number of criminal incidents has increased by 1.3% (2,970 incidents) since the year ending June 2014. In the year ending June 2018 the lowest number of criminal incidents were reported for Property Damage (35,448 incidents) and Burglary/Break & Enter (41,319 incidents) in the CSA data holdings, which go back to July 2004.

Victorian criminal incidents recorded by principal offence category, 5 year trend

In the last five years the number of incidents with a principal offence of Crimes against the person has continued to rise. This category has increased by 25.8% or 12,788 incidents since the year ending June 2014. In this same period Assault and related offences has increased by 17.9% (5,938 incidents), Sexual Offences has increased by 55.8% (3,096 incidents), Stalking, harassment and threatening behaviour has increased by 28.2% (1,559 incidents) and Dangerous and negligent acts endangering people has increased by 53.8% (1,489 incidents).

Proportion of Victorian criminal incidents recorded by principal offence category, 5 year trend

In the five years to June 2018 the proportions of criminal incidents with a principal offence of Property and deception offences has steadily decreased. The proportion of Justice procedures offences has increased since the year ending June 2014. The proportion of Crimes against the person has also increased slightly in the last five years.

1.3 Regional profile

In the last 12 months there was a decrease in the number of criminal incidents recorded in Victoria across all four police regions, by 23,081 incidents (5.7%). The Western Region decreased by 8.0% or 5,299 incidents, Southern Metro Region decreased by 7.8% or 7,392 incidents, followed by the Eastern Region (6.6% or 5,901 incidents) and the North West Metro Region (2.9% or 4,489 incidents).

 

The five Local Government Areas with the highest criminal incident rates were:

  • Melbourne (15,949.9 incidents per 100,000 estimated resident population, down 5.8%)
  • Latrobe (12,896.1 incidents per 100,000 estimated resident population, down 3.5%)
  • Yarra (11,119.2 incidents per 100,000 estimated resident population, down 3.8%)
  • Mildura (9,222.0 incidents per 100,000 estimated resident population, down 1.4%)
  • Greater Shepparton (9,111.8 incidents per 100,000 estimated resident population, down 3.1%)

Further information on the number and types of incidents by Local Government Area is available in the Crime by location tool at www.crimestatistics.vic.gov.au (External link).

1.4 Criminal incidents arising in the context of family violence

A criminal incident is counted as having arisen in the context of family violence when Victoria Police have completed an L17 form and a criminal offence has also been recorded. The following graph highlights the number of criminal incidents that were and were not related to a recorded family incident over the past five years.

Victorian criminal incidents recorded by whether family incident related, 5 year trend

In the last 12 months the proportion of criminal incidents related to a family incident increased from 13.6% to 14.2%. While the proportion increased the overall numbers decreased 1.8% (1,021 incidents) from 55,258 to 54,237 family violence related criminal incidents.

1.5 Investigation status

At the time the data were extracted, 26.3% of criminal incidents recorded in the past 12 months in the category of Crimes against the person resulted in an Arrest (16,440 incidents). A further 24.6% of criminal incidents resulted in a Summons (15,373 incidents) and 20.3% remained Unsolved (12,673 incidents). For 22.3% (13,943 incidents) an Intent to summons in the future had been recorded and the remaining 6.4% (3,980 incidents) resulted in either a Caution/Official warning, Penalty Infringement Notice or Other outcome. For more information about counting rules, please refer to the Explanatory Notes.

Victorian criminal incidents recorded by investigation status, year ending June 2018

Other includes: Penalty infringement notice, caution not authorised, complaint withdrawn, notice to appear, offender processed, warrant issued, presentment and other statuses.

Criminal Incidents – Data Visualisation

The criminal incidents data visualisation contains the number and rate of criminal incidents in Victoria. 

For instructions on how to use the visualisation please download the 'Guide for use' PDF at the end of this page.

 

Author
Crime Statistics Agency, 2018
Publisher
Crime Statistics Agency, 2018
Date of Publication

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