Hate crimes soar in East Riding

Police say the rise in the figures is because more victims are coming forward to report crime.
Police say the rise in the figures is because more victims are coming forward to report crime.

Hate crimes have soared in the East Riding since the nation voted for Brexit last year, new figures reveal.

Figures increased by a massive 55% in the county when the 11 months before and the 11 months after Britain voted to leave the European Union are compared.

These figures, gained by the Pocklington Post through a Freedom of Information request to Humberside Police Force, reveal the stark increase since the EU referendum on June 23 last year.

The number of reports of racially or religiously aggravated public fear, alarm or distress has risen dramatically since the EU referendum while the number of racially or religiously aggravated assaults with injury has risen from zero before the vote to seven afterwards.

Aggravated assaults with injury as a whole has almost doubled.

The number of hate crimes reported as a whole have also seen an whopping increase.

In 2015, 70 crimes were reported which increased by 45% to 102 in 2016.

The figures for 2017, which date up until mid-May, are at 61 – showing an increase of 258% when compared with the same time period in 2015.

Humberside Police say the figures show more people feel confident enough to come forward.

Sergeant Nick Bunker, from the community cohesion team, said: “The vast majority of forces saw an increase in reported hate crimes and incidents around the time of Brexit and this is something we welcome as it shows an increase in confidence in victims to come forward.

“Nationally, it’s estimated that 50% of offences are not reported, so any increase in confidence is something we would encourage.

“It’s worth taking into account that while there were a small number of incidents reported to us that were linked directly to Brexit, we believe there are a number of factors which have led to the increase in reported incidents.

“These include the high profile coverage of Brexit and the associated issues it put into the public domain. This put hate crime at the forefront of peoples’ minds and made them more likely to come forward.

“We would strongly urge anyone who is a victim of a hate crime, or knows of someone who is, to call 101 – or 999 if in immediate danger. A hate crime reporting form is also available our on website www.humberside.police.uk.”