Figures from the latest statistics in South Africa have revealed a rise in crime between July and September.
This is the same time when the country eased some of the lock-down regulations as COVID-19 infections decreased.
According to the minister of Police, Bheki Cele while informing the media on the statistics on Friday (November 13), the increase was expected as citizens enjoyed fewer restrictions.
Murder rate lower than 2019
Minister Cele said that in the period under review, about 5,107 people were murdered in South Africa.
“This meant that 339 people less were killed, compared to the same time last year. This is also the lowest figure for the past four 2nd quarters from 2017/2018,” said Cele.
Some of the finding made by the police using a sample from the murder dockets found that almost half of the murders occurred in public spaces. These ares include beaches, open velds, parks and streets. Cele also said 900 deaths occurred at the victims homes or the homes of those who murdered them.
The main causes of the majority of murder crimes are gang conflicts, robberies and vandalism.
Alcohol abuse is a crime magnet
The police crime figures have showed the consumption and abuse of alcohol has been a significant factor contributing to increase in violent incidents countrywide.
Alcohol was named as a contributor in over 829 assault with grievous bodily harm (GBH) cases, 747 rape cases and 179 attempts of murder.
“These crime statistics continue to to vindicate our actions as the SAPS to clamp down on illegal alcohol trading,” said Cele.
According to the minister, over 1,000 incidents of murder, attempted murder, rape and assault took place inside or outside liquor outlets like bars and shebeens. “This makes it impossible to deny the true effects of alcohol abuse,” Cele added.
GBV cases also drop
While there has been a drop in the number of sexual offences reported, the scourge of gender-based violence and femicide (GBVF) continues to haunt women and children in the country.
Bheki Cele, said crimes such as rape and sexual assault recorded a dip of 16.8%.
The country reported an 18.8% reduction in the number of rape cases.
However, Cele said the months of July, August and September 2020 were “dangerous” months for thousands of women after 8 922 cases of rape were reported during this period.
Cele told the media that a sample of 5 168 rape dockets revealed that 3 578 people were raped in their homes or at the home of their perpetrators.
“The same analysis also revealed that more people were raped in KwaZulu-Natal than any other province.”
According to the data, most of the rapes that occurred in the residence of the perpetrator or victim happened in KwaZulu-Natal with 710 reported cases, followed by Gauteng with 578 and Western Cape with 514.
“Majority of those who were raped were women,” Cele added.
All Contact Crimes decreased by 11.6%