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Published:  2015-01-04 Views:  1695
Author:  karelnel
Published in:  Security/Sekuriteit
Harties Comparative Crime Statistics In 2014 – Part 1

Harties Comparative Crime Statistics in 2014 – Part 1

A previous series of articles on crime statistics for Harties dwelled on the public domain  database published by the SAPS late 2013. The observant reader may have asked – what was the case with the statistics when the database was republished towards the end of 2014?? (See http://www.saps.gov.za/resource_centre/publications/statistics/crimestats/2014/crime_stats.php ) This short series of articles will deal with that question, albeit in a slightly different way, which will not only make the crime statistics more comparable with crime statistics for other areas, but may also make the data controversial because of the nature of the assumptions involved.

In the database published by the SAPS in September 2014 they took a step forward in the sense that for the RSA and the Provinces they published not only the number of crime incidences for the different crime types (as for previous years), but they also published crime figures as number of crime incidences per 100 000 of population. The SAPS must have access to national and provincial population numbers, and once those are available it is easy to calculate crime figures per 100 000 of the population, which is a much more meaningful metric. It is not clear whether the SAPS have taken the population growth for the past ten years in consideration, or whether they have just used the latest available population figures for all of the ten years, which will obviously give a distorted set of figures for the earlier years. These figures have nevertheless been used below.

Unfortunately the SAPS did not do the same on the level of the individual police precincts that they report on. For the different police stations they only published the number of incidences per crime type, as they did in the past. (There was however a slight change in the categories of crime in the database) This may be so because of the fact that population figures on local level are difficult to obtain, and the police statisticians may not have  wanted to become embroiled in the massive problem of obtaining local population figures. This makes the local published figures not directly comparable with the provincial or national figures. It can, however be done easily, if a reliable population figure could be obtained.

Trying to find a reliable population figure for Hartbeespoort was difficult and riddled with uncertainties. One can readily get the census figures for Madibeng, but not for Hartbeespoort. If one could find it for Hartbeespoort, how can one be sure that the census district was precisely the same as the policing precinct?  Furthermore one not only needs the current figures (for 2014) but, to be correct, the actual figures for the previous ten years, since there was obviously growth in the population over this period. A figure of  38229 for 2011, as quoted by the Crime Hub, (http://www.issafrica.org/crimehub/stats )  may be a good figure to use. Madibeng, on their website, quotes a growth figure for the area of just over 3% per annum, and that figure was adopted to back-estimate population figures for Hartbeespoortdam for the years preceding 2011 and the following years to 2014, leading to an end-figure of 50 000 for 2014.

The reader should note that the crime figures noted below for Hartbeespoordam are SENSITIVE to the assumption of population figures. The graphs below show the results of the above calculations. No analysis will be done – the reader is left to draw his own conclusions.

  1. Murder

Figure 1 : Comparative Statistics for Murder

A good improvement was reported for Hartbeespoort for the last 3 years and Hartbeespoort seems to be below the national average. The reader should note the smooth trends in national and provincial figures – this is to be expected since the numbers dealt with at those levels are large and statistical variation will not be so dramatic as with smaller samples.

2. Total Sexual Crimes

 

Fig 2: Comparative Statistics for Total Sexual Crimes

Interestingly the figures for Harties fall far below national and provincial trends, that are more or less aligned with each other. This is difficult to understand. Does our population have a hormonal deficiency or is it something in our water? (Just a joke)

3. Attempted Murder:

Figure 3: Comparative Statistics for Attempted Murder

Strangely Hartbeespoort comes in significantly higher than national and provincial levels, while for murder (see Fig 1 above) Hartbeespoort is lower. (Are our murderers not as effective as those in the rest of the country, or are our victims stronger ? – Just a joke)

4. Assault with the purpose to inflict grievous bodily harm

Figure 4: Comparative Statistics for Assault GBH

A good trend is reported for Hartbeespoort, and respectably lower than national and provincial levels.

5. Common Assault

Figure 5: Comparative Statistics for Common Assault

Nice trends on National, provincial and local levels and Hartbeespootrdam comparable with wider levels.

6. Common Robbery

Figure 6: Comparative Statistics for Common Robbery

Hartbeespoort compares well with provincial and national levels

7. Robbery with Aggravating Circumstances

Figure 7: Comparative Statistics for Robbery with Aggravating Circumstances

Harties coming under control and approaching national levels?

8. Arson

Figure 8: Comparative Statistics for Arson

Harties approaching national and provincial levels.

9. Malicious Damage to Property

Figure 9: Comparative Statistics for malicious Damage to Property

Although the trend for Harties is downward, which is commendable, it may seem that we in Harties are a population bent on destruction of property, more so than the rest of the country! What can the reason for this be?

 

Conclusion:  The statistics shown above for the first time give us the opportunity to compare Harties crime statistics with those of the province and the RSA, based on certain assumptions regarding population figures. To know the truth it may be necessary for a work group to rework these figures and also get hold of more accurate population figures. The police undoubtedly have access to figures such as these in their sophisticated crime-recording and –reporting system and it would be a great help if they can prove or disprove the correctness of the figures above.

The next article in this series will deal with the remaining categories of crime as depicted from the 2014 SAPS public domain database.

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KPJ Nel

2015-01-04


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