63,119 reports of anti-social behaviour in Essex have gone unattended by police in the past three years, new data has revealed.
Rayleigh Liberal Democrats have blasted the Conservatives for being soft on crime and have demanded a return to community policing. The figures were uncovered through a Freedom of Information Request (FOI) tabled by the party to Essex Police.
They show that just 73657 incidents of anti-social behaviour of the 136,776 reported have had an officer attend the scene in the past three years. This means that 46.1% went unattended over the same period. The worst year was 2019, with only 50.2% of anti-social behaviour reports being followed up by a police officer in person.
The Liberal Democrats have warned that a fall in community policing has meant "people feel unsafe just walking down their own streets" on the government's watch. The latest figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show that almost one in two people say they never see police foot patrols, up from 30% in 2014-15.
Rayleigh Liberal Democrats are proposing a three-point plan to crack down on anti-social behaviour and reverse years of Conservative neglect:
Restore proper community policing, where officers are more visible, trusted and known personally to local people.
Reverse Conservative cuts to youth services by investing an extra £500 million a year nationally, via a ring-fenced fund to Local Authorities
Scrap Police and Crime Commissioners and use the £50 million savings to invest in frontline policing and solving crimes.
Liberal Democrat Councillor for Downhall & Rawreth, James Newport, said:
"These shocking figures show the Conservatives are soft on crime and are letting our communities down. People in Rayleigh deserve better than this.
"Too many people feel unsafe just walking down their own streets because the Conservatives have let anti-social behaviour run rampant. For years this government has failed to give our local police force the officers or resources to tackle this scourge properly.
"The Liberal Democrats are calling for a return to proper community policing, where officers are visible, trusted and known personally to local people. We will invest in youth services to give our young people opportunities and help make Rayleigh safer."
Between 2019 and 2021, 1,605,010 incidents of anti-social behaviour of the 3,581,666 reported to 34 police forces were attended by an officer (44.8%). 1,976,656 were unattended.
630,244 incidents of anti-social behaviour of the 1434150 reported to 34 police forces in 2020 were attended by an officer (43.9%). 803,906 were unattended.
Across the three-year period, 20/34 forces (59%) failed to have an officer attend at least half of all anti-social behaviour reports.
The five police forces with the most reports of anti-social behaviour in the three-year period were the Metropolitan Police (1,006,063), Lancashire (219,087), British Transport Police (157,176), Northumbria (154,443) and West Yorkshire (138,349).
The latest data shows the 2016 Police and Crime Commissioner Elections cost £50m in 2016.