Tower Hamlets police struggle to deal with burglaries

Photo of Met Police

Pic: Met Police

Police are struggling to deal with burglaries in Tower Hamlets, with 94 per cent of cases going unsolved last year.

According to John Biggs, Mayor of Tower Hamlets, when the Met’s budget was cut by £600m in 2010, the percentage of domestic burglaries across the whole of London solved by police was halved from 12 per cent in 2010/11 to just 6 per cent in 2014/15.

Biggs voiced fresh concerns last week that a further £800m of cuts, expected after the government’s autumn spending review, would cripple frontline services in the borough and warned that officers were already struggling to deal with low-level crime.

“The fact that 94 per cent of burglaries are going unsolved in Tower Hamlets shows that London’s police service is already being stretched to the limit,” he said.

“With another £800m of cuts coming down the tracks, [Boris Johnson] looks set to leave London with a far thinner blue line than when he came to power in 2008.

He also said that it “should be a worry to all of us” and to expect that “the Met is going to struggle to provide the service Londoners are used to.”

His comments come after Met Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe was forced to deny suggestions that budget cuts could stop the force investigating low-level crimes such as burglaries.

Whilst he pledged that the Met will continue to investigate burglaries, he admitted that there would have to be “a compromise somewhere” saying “we are going to struggle to do everything we used to do”.

In Tower Hamlets, 2313 domestic burglaries reported in the last 12 months alone are still unsolved, police figures show.

Boris Johnson also recently admitted that “you cannot have a city growing as fast as London, with the challenges London faces, without putting more money into the MPS”.

Earlier this month it was reported that the Metropolitan Police are planning to cut all PCSOs. Mayor Biggs has warned that the move would mean officers will not longer have the local intelligence needed to drive down burglaries.

249 uniformed officers have already been cut from Tower Hamlet’s streets since 2010 with dedicated neighbourhood policing teams also cut from six to only two officers each.

The Commissioner has accepted that the forthcoming cuts mean London will “end up with some less police, but I am not going to be precise.”

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