Fewer getting away with family violence across the north

Reported instances of family violence are on the rise in Whittlesea and Hume, according to the latest Victoria Police figures.

The crime statistics released last week show a 17 per cent rise in the number of family violence offences recorded in Whittlesea in the year to September 30, compared to the same period last year. Hume had an 8.9 per cent increase.

In Whittlesea, the reported family violence cases in the 12 months to September were 806 compared with 688 in the corresponding period last year. In Hume, the total number of offences were 1055 compared with 968 before.

Whittlesea Police Inspector Robert Dykstra asked the public to be mindful of the municipality’s rapidly expanding population when considering the latest figures.

He said council figures showed the city welcomes 165 new residents, issues about 65 residential building permits and five commercial building permits per week.

But Inspector Dykstra said: “I make no apologies for our ongoing hard line approach against those offending in cases of family violence. Assault, damage, threats and breaches of orders will result in criminal charges.”

Women’s Health In the North chief executive Helen Riseborough said the increase in reporting was a positive result as it proved that awareness campaigns were working.

“There’s a lot of momentum in our region about the fact that violence against women is serious, common and preventable,” she said. “In the past, there was an attitude that police might not respond. Now women are more confident about reporting.”

Robbery cases were down in both municipalities, as were residential and other burglaries. In Whittlesea, robbery cases fell 12.3 per cent, and in Hume, 37.3 per cent.

Instances of assault and theft from motor vehicles were up in Whittlesea by 8 per cent and 1.9 per cent respectively.

The total crime in Hume fell by 2.2 per cent, from 15,178 to 14,847.

In Hume, there were decreases in assault and theft from cars.

Inspector Geoff Kedge said crime reduction strategies including specialised units, protective services officers at railway stations and road policing blitzes helped combat crime.