An increase in intervention order breaches, drug possession and weapons charges across the Northern Grampians Shire led to a jump in crime recorded throughout 2020.
The latest Crime statistics for the past year confirmed a 8.9 per cent increase in criminal offences recorded across the local government area in 12 months, and a 21.6 per cent increase in the past two years.
Overall, 1202 criminal offences were recorded, up from 1104 in 2019. About 65 per cent of the crimes took place in Stawell, and 13 per cent in St Arnaud.
2020 was the worst year for the municipality since 2016, when 1348 crimes were recorded.
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There was 481 total victims of crime, with 214 males, 174 females and 88 businesses or organisations.
Family violence incidents rose by two per cent during 2020, with 237 offences recorded, making it the equal-worst year for the area since statistics became publicly available in 2016.
More than three-quarters of the victims were female;
About 24 per cent were aged 25-34 years old, 22 per cent were aged between 18-24 and 15 per cent were 55-years-old or older.
Intervention order breaches grew by 28 per cent, from with 204 offences recorded in 2020, up from 159 in the previous year.
Drug-related offences rose by 93 per cent in 2020 with 166 offences overall. The majority of the offences were for drug possession, which doubled, with 140 offences recorded last year, compared to 69 the year prior.
Despite the overall increase in criminal offences, many subdivisions decreased in 2020.
Property damage decreased 30 percent (100 offences in 2020), theft dropped 24 per cent (150 offences), and assault was down 12 per cent (130 offences).
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