Crime

Rapid Rise of Stalking and Harassment Cases in Dorset County.

 Reports of stalking and harassment offences have risen by 64-76% since 2015/16 across Dorset County.

The increase has been attributed to better recording by the police.

The Office for National Statistics Data show a total of approximately 3000 cases reported.

Bournemouth has 983 cases of stalking, harassment or malicious communications. Dorset county are has 1,479 cases while Poole has 573.

Stalking has been identified as the most serious of them. It includes monitoring people’s phones and computers, following them, and repeatedly going to their houses uninvited.

Katie Ghose from Women’s Aid, an anti domestic abuse charity said that women are more likely to experience stalking as a form of abuse from a partner.

 

Furthermore, some charity officials disapproved of grouping the crimes together.

 

Victoria Charleston from the Suzy Lamplugh Trust, a charity working on reducing the risk of violence and aggression, said that placing the two crimes together masks the true scale of stalking.

 

The government said it will give the trust £4.1 million to educate police officers about stalking and harassment. It is also passing the Stalking Protection Bill.

 

The bill will introduce new civil Stalking Protection Orders to protect victims. Breaching the order can lead to a maximum of 5 years in prison.

 

Dorset police condemned stalking and welcomed any improvements to police recording of the crime.

 

Victims can call the police via 101, or 999 in an emergency. The National Stalking Helpline can be contacted on 0808 802 0300.

 

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