Revealed: Harassment and threats of violence at Chichester Railway Station double in a year

The number of harassment crimes and threats of violence at Chichester Railway Station has more than doubled in one year, the Observer can reveal.

Friday, 27th July 2018, 3:00 pm
Updated Friday, 27th July 2018, 4:04 pm
Crime figures show a spike in harassment and violence at Chichester Railway Station

This is part of a wider rise in crime at the station, which has also seen assaults treble over the last five years.

British Transport Police (BTP) said the increase in crime at Chichester station mirrors the rest of the rail network.

However it said the chances of being a victim of a crime are ‘thankfully rare’.

The number of stolen bicycles has also gone up

The total number of crimes logged at the Southern-operated station in the 12 months to June 16, 2018 was 103.

The figure for the same period in 2013-14 was 50.

The data was obtained following a Freedom of Information request.

The news comes after police issued an appeal after a violent assault at the station last Friday.

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Assaults and threats of violence on the rise

Harassment and threatening behaviour offences have more than doubled in the space of a year.

There were 26 total offences in the 12 months to June 16, 2018, up from 12 in 2016-17.

Assaults at the station have trebled in the last five years, with 27 offences last year.

This is also an 80 per cent rise on 2016-17, when 15 offences were recorded.

Nearly half (11) of these attacks resulted in injury, according to the data.

A problem with bicycle theft?

Thievery also appears to be a problem that is getting worse.

There were 48 total theft offences recorded at the railway station in the last 12 months.

While this is only a small increase on 2016-17’s 44 thefts, it is a fair jump from the 25 logged in 2013-14.

Bicycle thefts in the last year (36) were double the 18 logged in 2013-14.

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‘The chances of being a victim of crime are thankfully rare’

A spokesman for BTP said: “We have officers out across Sussex around the clock, keeping passengers and rail staff safe.

“Like other forces, over recent years BTP has recorded an increase in crime on the rail network, including at Chichester station.

“It is important to remember that passenger numbers continue to increase and that the chances of being a victim of crime are thankfully rare.

“We know a visible policing presence is vital to building public confidence and so we work closely with our partners to ensure we’re in the right place at the right time, wherever we’re needed.

“We’re committed to tackling crime and ensure that passengers and rail staff feel reassured when travelling on the network.

“If anyone ever witnesses a crime on the rail network, or needs our help in any way, we urge them to get in touch by sending us a text to 61016 or by calling 0800 40 50 40.”

Tony Holland, Govia Thameslink’s head of security, said: “We have recognised the spike in certain types of crime at Chichester station, especially in anti-social behaviour.

“The safety of our passengers is our first priority, and we work with the British Transport Police to focus on problem areas.

“Our rail enforcement officers are also targeting their patrols on the station to deter anti-social behaviour and to give reassurance.”

Do you use Chichester Railway Station? What do you think about the increase in crime?

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