CRIME has fallen in North Yorkshire with the number of thefts and burglaries down in the last year.

However, the county shows an increase in robberies of six per cent, failing to meet the average for England of a 12 per cent reduction.

Violent offences have dropped in the region, but the figures are still above the national average.

The figures for the year ending December were released by the Office for National Statistics, and showed there were 34,615 crimes reported in 12 months – a drop of 4 per cent on the previous year.

Of these, 6,136 incidents of violence against the person were reported, up 3 per cent on 2012; violence without injury was up 13 per cent to 2,604, compared with a national increase of 2 per cent; possession of weapons was down 14 per cent, and vehicle offences were down 10 per cent on the previous year.

However, the figures showed a 13 per cent increase in sexual offences (672 incidents), a 6 per cent increase in robbery (125), and a 7 per cent increase in bicycle theft (1,389), as well as a 10 per cent rise in public order offences (1,260).

Chief Constable Dave Jones, of North Yorkshire Police, said the increase in reported sexual offences was due largely to the opening of York’s Sexual Assault Referral Centre and the high-profile Operation Yewtree.

He said: “As we have already achieved a significant reduction in crime in recent years, reducing it further poses a constant challenge. However, this is something which we have prepared for.

“I am satisfied with the latest crime figures, which demonstrate that the plans we have in place are working effectively, building on the success of recent years. They reflect the hard work, dedication and commitment which our officers, staff and community partners display on a daily basis.”

In Humberside violent crimes against the person rose by 6 per cent (11,632 incidents), there was an 8 per cent rise in sexual offences (1,247), an 8 per cent rise in burglary (10,432), and a 15 per cent rise in shoplifting (7,365).

However, robbery was down 8 per cent (478) and domestic burglary was down by 1 per cent (3,811).