Five murders in a year but apart from that crime's gone down

SERIOUS crimes fell almost across the board in the Richmond-Tweed region this year barring one major exception - a 500% increase in murders.

Only one murder charge was laid in the 12 months to September, 2013, compared to five over the same period this year.

Police have welcomed a reduction or stable rates of all 17 major crime categories over the past 24 months across New South Wales.

There was good news for the Richmond-Tweed region, with domestic assaults dropping by 14% and a 50% fall in armed robberies with a firearm.

Break-and-enters on homes also fell by 20% while theft from a person levels decreased by 36%.

NSW Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione said the overall figures were a good result for the state, but acknowledged the rise of methamphetamine remained a major problem.

Statewide charges for amphetamine possession increased 25.9% over the two years to 2014, while marijuana possession spiked by 12.7%.

"We have quite deliberately set out to disrupt the availability of these drugs in the community," Mr Scipione said.

"History tells us the damage these drugs can do to young people and if we save one life, it's worth it."

- APN NEWSDESK



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