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#CrimeStats: House robbery, the 2nd most feared crime in SA

Minister Nathi Nhleko & Police Commissioner Riah Phiyega released the annual figures in Parliament today.

FILE. National Police Commissioner Riah Phiyega releases SA's 2015 Crime Stats. Picture: Anthony Molyneaux/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - House robbery, defined by a level of violence, has increased by 5.2 percent, according to the latest annual crime statistics.

Stats South Africa has found this is the second most feared crime in South Africa.

Police Minister Nkosinathi Nhleko and National Police Commissioner Riah Phiyega released the annual figures in Parliament today.

There's been a 5.2 percent increase in house robberies, which is a sub-category of aggravated robberies. On the other hand, there's been a 2.3 percent decrease in home burglaries.

Stats SA says an estimated 60 percent of South Africans fear their homes will be broken into, making home burglary the most feared crime in the country.

Overall, Phiyega says property related crime, which includes burglary and theft, is down.

"Property related crimes as an area increase by 2.5 percent over 10 years. In five years it increased by 4.6 percent and in the current year we have a decrease of 0.8 percent."

The crime stats show a total of 1.7 million people were arrested during the period under review.

WATCH: Crime stats alarm members of Parliament

RESULTS WELCOMED

The South African Banking Risk Information Centre (Sabric) has welcomed the decrease in crimes affecting its sector, saying its close cooperation with the police is yielding results.

The latest figures show a 19 percent decrease in bank robberies and 17 percent decrease in cash-in-transit robberies.

Sabric's Kalyani Pillay says the sector works closely with the police because they simply can't do it alone.

"The banking sector and cash-in-transit sector are doing all that they can do to ensure that there is support to the police in terms of what they need to do. We assist the police with the analysis of the stats. We assist the police with information and do all we can to provide them with a lot of information."

MEDIA INFLUENCE ON CRIME

Meanwhile, Phiyega has claimed the quantity of media coverage on crime could perpetuate what she's called 'copycatting'.

She told Members of Parliament in the Police Portfolio Committee that the quantity of media coverage on crime may breed more crime.

When journalists later asked her what she meant, Phiyega explained she's concerned about copycatting.

"There is also copycatting which we must look into to, to start saying do we compromise certain things in the manner we report because it may accelerate interests in criminals to do particular things?"

She says would-be criminals can learn from media reporting on certain crimes.

But Phiyega also says the media has a role to play in creating awareness about crime.

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