Rotterdam: Street crime, repeat offenses drop steeply

Rotterdam's approach to high impact crimes, crimes that have a major impact on their victims' lives, is proving to be effective. Both the number these crimes, such as robberies and burglaries, and the number of repeat offenses showed a significant decrease in 2014.

Mayor Ahmed Aboutaleb, Police Chief Frank Paauw and Chief Prosecutor Marc van Nimwegen,  presented the results of the approach today.

The number of street robberies decreased by 24 percent, from 914 in 2013 to 699 in 2014. The number of assaults decreased by 8 percent from 179 to 164 and the number of burglaries and attempted burglaries decreased by 9 percent from 4,246 to 3,858.

Last year Rotterdam also launched an intensive, individualized approach to repeat offenders in the Veiligheidshuis Rotterdam-Rijnmond. Before the start of this approach 51 percent of attackers offended again. After the start of this approach that number decreased to 34 percent.

In April this year the municipality also launched project Clean Ship to complement the current approach to repeat offenders. This project targets men between the ages of 18 and 65 years that are receiving a municipal WWB benefit and have already been convicted for high impact crimes more than once. The participants are put to work for 32 hours a week under the guidance of former marines. They do heavy work in the outdoor are and outside the city. The municipality hopes that this will help reduce the risk of recidivism.