BONN/RHINE-SIEG COUNTY. Current crime statistics show that the number of crimes in Bonn and the region has fallen. Burglaries went down but the number of sex offenses increased. More and more police are also victims of violence.
Bonn police are showing further success in combatting crime. In the past year, the total number of registered offenses went down as well as those perceived particularly threatening by the population. Burglaries declined 22.8 percent from 2016 to 2017, with a total of 1,401 burglaries last year. The local and regional trend is on par with that at state level.
On Wednesday, the crime statistics were released for Bonn and the region, and the state of North Rhine Westphalia (NRW). "Bonn and the region have become safer again," said police chief Ursula Brohl-Sowa. In addition to the Bonn city surroundings, her area of responsibility includes a large part of the Rhein-Sieg district. The police chief continues to see the strategy of presence and intervention in hotspots such as Tannenbusch and Bad Godesberg as successful. Especially in the southern district of Bonn, police can point to significantly lower numbers. Here are some of the details:
Offenses: Police recorded 40,839 offenses in Bonn, Bad Honnef, Königswinter and the Rhine-Sieg district on the left bank of the Rhine. That’s the lowest level since 1996. In addition to the decline in burglaries, there were fewer thefts, fewer cases of fraud and illegal use of services. More than half of all criminal cases remain unresolved.
Suspects: There were 904 fewer suspects in 2017, with a total of 14,305. One in five suspects was a minor. The number of non-German suspects (those without German citizenship) fell in 2017 to 4,740 from 5,239 in the previous year. According to police, the foreign suspects were particularly represented in cases of burglary (51.4 percent of suspects), shoplifting (46.3 percent of suspects), and robbery offenses (39.4 percent of suspects). Asylum seekers were also noticeably represented in cases of shoplifting (23.7 percent) and in robbery offenses (12.4 percent).
Break-ins: Registering 414 fewer burglaries than in 2016 meant “that in the past four years, the number of cases was nearly cut in half,” says Ursula Brohl-Sowa. She said the numbers showed police strategy was working. Besides police work, good prevention also contributed to the fact that in every other case, burglars were unsuccessful because of well-secured windows or doors, and vigilant neighbors. In the past year, only one in ten burglaries could be solved, but Brohl-Sowa is confident that she will be able to increase this below average number in a year. One reason is a 34-year-old who has been arrested, with 205 home burglaries having been attributed to him.
Capital crimes: Five people were killed in criminal acts in Bonn in 2017, and there were five cases of attempted homicide, all of the cases were solved.
Sex offenses: Cases of “sexual assault” increased. A total of 419 sex offenses were recorded last year, including 98 cases of rape and sexual assault (2016: 79 cases). Based on all sex offenses, 70.6 of the cases were solved.
Criminal statistics in Rhine-Sieg County
With 20,059 registered offenses, the number fell 7.4 percent and is at the lowest level since eleven years. Of those cases, officials were able to solve 10,997, an increase of 4.78 percent.
Officials cite their work in fighting burglaries as successful. Police director Günter Brodeßer said it was “gratifying” that they were able “to reduce the number of cases by 30 percent since 2014.” Still, there was an increase in home burglaries to 901, which is 26 more than in 2016.
Significant rise in suspects who are minors
In total, theft has dropped 20 percent to 7,596 cases. An increase of 15.4 percent was recorded in property and counterfeiting offenses. It includes such offenses as people posing to be gas meter readers, and a supposed internet shop in Troisdorf which never delivered goods that were ordered online.
Striking is the rise of suspects under age 14 from 152 to 250. "It's mostly shoplifting, property damage or minor bodily injury," said Dietrich. Among the areas with the highest numbers, most of the offenses are Troisdorf (26.09 percent), Siegburg (21.05 percent) and Sankt Augustin (13.63 percent).
Brodeßer said he was deeply affected that more and more police officers were being attacked while serving to keep citizens safe. There were 80 cases in 2017, which was seven more than in 2016. Police will reinforce their commitment to the Respect campaign.
Orig. text: Rüdiger Franz, Nadine Quadt