Shoplifting hotspots in Hackney revealed as police forced to drop ‘low level’ crimes

PUBLISHED: 12:59 04 January 2020 | UPDATED: 12:59 04 January 2020

Around 150 crimes were reported in Stoke Newington High Street and surrounding streets. Picture: Joe Lord

Around 150 crimes were reported in Stoke Newington High Street and surrounding streets. Picture: Joe Lord


Thieves have targeted businesses in Hackney more than 2,500 times in two years - but just a tenth of offences are leading to any action.

According to Met Police data shopkeepers have reported would-be shoplifters to police 2,832 times since January 2017.

Of these 2,301 - or 89 per cent or reports - have either been closed with no suspect identified, are still under investigation or have not been updated since the original crime report.

Just 30 perpetrators have been sent to prison in that time. Another 11 were handed suspended sentences and nine received community sentences.

A further 26 offenders were cautioned and 18 were given a penalty notice.

Dalston Lane was Hackney's second worst-hit location. Picture: Isabel InfantesDalston Lane was Hackney's second worst-hit location. Picture: Isabel Infantes

The Metropolitan Police put the low resolution rate down to having to prioritise in the face of waning resources.

A spokeswoman said: " "The Met is under various pressures including financial challenges and increasing demand. As a result we are having to take decisions about how we prioritise our resources.

"Homicide, kidnap, sexual offences or domestic violence and other serious offences will continue to be fully investigated.

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"[But] with the pressure on our resources it is not proportionate for our officers to spend a considerable amount of time looking into a low-value theft offence."

The largest number of would-be thefts - a total of 570 in under two years - took place in Dalston, where in only 36 cases was some kind of action was taken against the perpetrator.

The other worst-hit wards were Hackney Central with 562 incidents, followed by Stoke Newington and Hoxton East and Shoreditch, with 229 and 228.

According to police data, there have been 548 thefts from supermarkets in Hackney since January 2017 and 120 in shopping centres.

The largest number of calls came from Stoke Newington High Street, with around 150 crime reports made in less than two years.

This was followed by Mare Street with 94, while 117 incidents were reported at shops along Tyssen Street and Dalston Lane.

Would-be thieves have also targeted a number of smaller streets in Hackney.

No fewer than 18 incidents were logged in Bradbury Street by Dalston Kingsland tube, with one person sent to prison in that time.

Police received the same number of calls from Rivington Street in Shoreditch, where not one of the reports led to an outcome.

A total of 16 people tried to steal from the petrol station and McDonald's off Thoresby Street in Hoxton. Not one of them was caught or faced any consequences.

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