There is dismay over crime statistics that show around two-thirds of crimes in Tilehurst go unpunished.

Official statistics from the police show across Tilehurst, only three per cent of crimes committed in the past year have resulted in a conviction or a caution.

Over that year, 1,405 recorded crimes were committed in Tilehurst, with the most frequent being violence and sexual offences, anti-social behaviour and theft.

However, only three per cent of these crimes resulted in a charge or caution being given. In most cases a suspect was not identified, or there was insufficient evidence to charge a suspect.

The remaining 33 per cent of crimes had local resolution, are still under investigation or pending a court outcome, or further investigation was not deemed in the public interest.

The figures have been obtained by the Liberal Democrats who have accused Conservative Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) Matthew Barber of letting the decline in policing in the area happen.

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Councillor James Moore (Liberal Democrats, Tilehurst) said: “This is simply not good enough. Conservative cuts have taken 1000 police community support Officers of the streets in the past year alone.

“The Conservative PCC has sat back and let this happen on his watch.

“Everyone knows that the local police team in Reading work extremely hard and do an excellent job. But they are overstretched and under-resourced.

Reading Chronicle: Councillor James Moore, a Liberal Democrat representative for Tilehurst ward.Councillor James Moore, a Liberal Democrat representative for Tilehurst ward.

“We need a properly funded police force with the resources to prevent more crimes, and to investigate those which are committed more effectively.”

“The Liberal Democrats have called for an urgent meeting with the Chief Constable and PCC to call for more resources to fight and punish crime in Tilehurst.”

PCC Barber recently held a presentation to Reading Borough Council’s policy committee on Monday, March 11 where statistics and crime prevention measures were discussed.

Addressing the Lib Dem attacks and the crime statistics from 2023, Mr Barber said: “The councillors are right to mention crime prevention in their comments.

“That is the most important function of policing, and as presented to councillors on Monday crime overall is down in Reading by eight per cent.

“Violent crime is down by nine per cent, knife crime down by 13 per cent and sexual offences are down by eight per cent.

“Whilst this is no consolation to anyone who has been a victim, the message to residents in Tilehurst and Reading more broadly is that you are now less likely to be a victim of crime in the first place.

Reading Chronicle: Matthew Barber, the Conservative Police and Crime Commissioner for the Thames Valley. Credit: Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for the Thames ValleyMatthew Barber, the Conservative Police and Crime Commissioner for the Thames Valley. Credit: Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for the Thames Valley

“We all want to see detection rates increase, but statistics that exclude crimes still being investigated and cases awaiting an outcome at court can easily be seen as misleading.

“I am always happy to meet with residents or councillors to discuss local concerns, although I am a little surprised by a call for an ‘urgent meeting’ when they haven’t been in touch with me directly to ask for a meeting, and the Chief Constable and I met with councillors at a public meeting in Reading only three days ago.

Cllr Moore is due to defend his seat in Tilehurst in the 2024 local elections.

Mr Barber is defending his position as PCC in this years’ elections as well.