New analysis from the Liberal Democrats has revealed that a staggering 3021 burglaries went unsolved across Surrey in the year ending September 2023, the 2nd highest unsolved rate in the country. Only South Yorkshire was worse.
On average 8 burglaries in Surrey went unsolved every single day. In the year to September 2023, only 152 burglaries actually resulted in a suspect being charged - equivalent to just 4% of cases.
Surrey’s Lib Dems have slammed the Conservative Government and the Surrey Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) for these dreadful figures, arguing that years of ineffective resourcing have left local police forces overstretched and unable to focus on frontline crime like burglaries.
This includes taking 69 Police community support officers (PCSOs) off the streets in Surrey since the current Conservative PCC was elected in 2021 – a near 50% reduction.
As of September 2023, there are only 71 PCSOs on the streets of Surrey.
The Lib Dems are demanding a return to proper community policing, where officers are visible, trusted and focused on tackling neighbourhood crime.
The party is also calling for a new “Burglary Response Guarantee,” under which all domestic burglaries would be attended by the police and properly investigated.
Lib Dem Paul Kennedy, the main challenger to the Conservative PCC in Surrey having been runner up with 42% of the vote in the 2021 election, said:
“Under the Conservatives, Surrey residents pay the highest council tax in the country for our police service. But with the vast majority of burglaries still going unsolved in Surrey, too many people feel unsafe in their own homes.
“Time and again, the Conservatives have failed to deliver the absolute basics of stopping and solving crime. But enough is enough.
“Surrey deserves better. It’s high time to bring an end to this shameful burglar bailout - which is why the Lib Dems will keep pushing the Conservatives to implement our Burglary Response Guarantee and get more bobbies on the beat.”