Crime stats: Liquor linked to lockdown lawlessness, home invasions up

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Minister of Police Bheki Cele.
Minister of Police Bheki Cele.
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  • Liquor is a contributing factor to violent crimes in SA including rape, assault, and attempted murder.
  • Police Minister Bheki Cele says alcohol contributed to 829 assault GBH cases, 747 rape cases, and 179 attempts of murder.
  • Between July and September 2020, 5 107 people were murdered in SA.

Liquor is a contributing factor to violent crimes in the country including rape, assault, and attempted murder, Police Minister Bheki Cele said on Friday.

He released the quarterly crime statistics for the period, July to 30 September 2020.

Cele said alcohol contributed to 829 assault GBH cases, 747 rape cases, and 179 cases of attempted murder.

"The figures show the consumption and abuse of alcohol is a causative factor in hundreds of murder cases recorded in the second quarter; over 1 000 incidences of murder, attempted murder, rape and assault took place at in or outside liquor outlets such as bars, taverns, shebeens and nightclubs.

"These figures make it impossible to deny the true effects of alcohol abuse," said Cele.

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He said the crime statistics reflected a country that was enjoying fewer restrictions under the Disaster Management Act.

Between July and September 2020, 5 107 people were murdered in South Africa.

"This meant 339 less people were killed, compared to the same period last year. This is also the lowest figure for the past four second quarters from 2017/18 to date. From a sample of 4 290 murder dockets, analysis revealed that 1 992 of the murders occurred in public spaces such as beaches, parks, streets or open fields. Over 900 people were killed in their homes or the homes of those who ended their lives," said Cele.

Cele said there has been a decrease in the number of sexual offences reported.

READ | Expect crime stats to reveal an increase in violent crime since lifting of alcohol restrictions - expert

"This means a 16.8% dip in crimes such as rape and sexual assault was recorded. While there was an 18.8% decrease in the number of rape cases, the month of July, August and September 2020 were dangerous months for thousands of women in this country. There were 8 922 cases of rape were reported at this time.

"Over 1 000 persons were raped in public places such as parks, beaches, parking areas, or open fields. The same analysis also revealed that more people were raped in Kwa-Zulu Natal than any other province," Cele said.

In the three months of reporting, there have been 7 339 cases of stock theft countrywide, where 26 322 sheep and over 14 000 cattle were stolen.

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Cele said there has been a decrease of stock theft cases countrywide, except for the Northern Cape.

"If we are to rid the country of stock theft, we have to tackle the whole value chain from the top right down to which butchery this stolen meat ends up in. This crime which I believe is a form of 'economic sabotage' needs to be tackled not just by the police but also have the buy-in of other departments that can assist in the tracking, tracing, marking, and movement of stock.

"We have set up a task team to look into stock theft in the Free State and are confident this will yield results," Cele said.


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