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Crime and Safety in Dorchester, Dorset

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Dorchester is the third most dangerous small town in Dorset, and is the 33rd most dangerous overall out of Dorset's 250 towns, villages, and cities. The overall crime rate in Dorchester in 2021 was 52 crimes per 1,000 people. This compares favourably to Dorset's overall crime rate, coming in 16% lower than the Dorset rate of 60 per 1,000 residents. For England, Wales, and Northern Ireland as a whole, Dorchester is the 368th safest small town, and the 3,025th most dangerous location out of all towns, cities, and villages.

In July 2021, Dorchester was the worst small town in Dorset for bicycle theft, with 4 crimes reported and a crime rate of 0.19 per 1,000 inhabitants. June 2021 was also a bad month for Dorchester residents, when it was Dorset's most dangerous small town for burglary, recording 4 crimes at a rate of 0.19 per 1,000 residents. Dorchester recorded 20 reports of criminal damage and arson during November 2021, making its crime rate of 0.93 the worst small town for criminal damage and arson in Dorset that month.

The most common crimes in Dorchester are violence and sexual offences, with 467 offences during 2021, giving a crime rate of 22. This is 13% lower than 2020's figure of 526 offences and a difference of 2.76 from 2020's crime rate of 25. Dorchester's least common crime is theft from the person, with 3 offences recorded in 2021, a decrease of 133% from 2020's figure of 7 crimes.

Dorchester 2022 Crime Scorecard

Third Most Dangerous

Small Towns, Dorset

13% lower, regional crime rate

South West

47% lower, national crime rate

England, Wales & NI

Local Crime in Context

As of 2022, the crime rate in Dorchester is 13% lower than the South West and 47% lower than the England, Wales & Northern Ireland overall figure.

Dorchester Crime Rate Over Time

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Dorchester
South West
England, Wales & NI

Dorchester Crime Map

Incidents mapped in Dorchester represent the time frame between May 2019 and April 2022. Each point on the map represents an area where crimes have been recorded locally.

Last updated: 02 Jun, 2022

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Dorchester
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Historical Crime Rates for Dorchester

YearCrime Rate per
1,000 people
Total Crimes
2021521,116
2020621,319
2019651,385
2018731,566
2017651,387
2016541,148

Crime in Dorchester Compared To Dorset

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Summary of Crimes in Dorchester This Year

 DorchesterDorset 
CrimeCountRateCountRateRate Difference
Anti-Social Behaviour64830.2321,13727.32 10% more dangerous
Bicycle Theft130.611,1311.46 139% safer
Burglary472.192,7573.56 63% safer
Criminal Damage and Arson1466.815,9497.69 13% safer
Drugs411.911,0411.35 29% more dangerous
Other Crime110.514280.55 8% safer
Other Theft1155.364,2215.46 1.9% safer
Possession of Weapons50.232510.32 39% safer
Public Order864.013,7884.90 22% safer
Robbery80.373500.45 22% safer
Shoplifting1145.322,3913.09 42% more dangerous
Theft From the Person30.142650.34 143% safer
Vehicle Crime602.803,5724.62 65% safer
Violence and Sexual Offences46721.7820,62126.65 22% safer

Dorchester Compared to Nearby Small Towns)

Small TownTotal CrimesCrime RateRate Difference
Blandford Forum49244.7616% safer
Swanage44445.2315% safer
Gillingham54445.2815% safer
Ferndown Town86645.8913% safer
Shaftesbury46051.481.1% safer
Dorchester1,11652.06-
Portland81461.1515% more dangerous
Bridport53964.6719% more dangerous

Crime Over Time in Dorchester

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Recent Crimes in Dorchester

DateCrime TypeLocationOutcome
April 2022Violence and sexual offencesOn or near Poundbury CrescentUnable to prosecute suspect
April 2022ShopliftingOn or near Shopping AreaInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
April 2022Criminal damage and arsonOn or near Charles StreetInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
April 2022ShopliftingOn or near SupermarketInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
April 2022Criminal damage and arsonOn or near Margaret PlaceInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
April 2022Vehicle crimeOn or near High East StreetInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
April 2022Violence and sexual offencesOn or near Maumbury RoadUnable to prosecute suspect
April 2022Other theftOn or near Parking AreaInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
April 2022Violence and sexual offencesOn or near Poundbury CrescentUnable to prosecute suspect
April 2022Criminal damage and arsonOn or near SupermarketInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
April 2022Violence and sexual offencesOn or near Sherberton StreetUnable to prosecute suspect
April 2022Violence and sexual offencesOn or near Whitfield RoadUnable to prosecute suspect
April 2022Violence and sexual offencesOn or near Syward RoadFurther investigation is not in the public interest
April 2022Vehicle crimeOn or near Dagmar RoadInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
April 2022Violence and sexual offencesOn or near Sherberton StreetUnable to prosecute suspect
April 2022Public orderOn or near Parking AreaUnable to prosecute suspect
April 2022Other theftOn or near High West StreetInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
April 2022Violence and sexual offencesOn or near Gloucester RoadUnable to prosecute suspect
April 2022Other theftOn or near Trematon CourtInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
April 2022Public orderOn or near Holly CloseInvestigation complete; no suspect identified

Dorchester Crime Trends

 Crime Rate Per 1,000 Residents 
Crime2018201920202021Trend
Anti-Social Behaviour34273530 Safer
Bicycle Theft1.70.700.610.61 Safer
Burglary53.42.02.2 Safer
Criminal Damage and Arson101097 Safer
Drugs2.63.03.71.9 Safer
Other Crime0.510.890.420.51 Safer
Other Theft11765 Safer
Possession of Weapons0.330.470.280.23 Safer
Public Order4.363.84.0 Safer
Robbery (inc. mugging)0.560.280.230.37 Getting worse
Shoplifting9675 Safer
Theft From the Person (inc. pickpocketing)0.510.750.330.14 Safer
Vehicle Crime3.73.84.02.8 Safer
Violence and Sexual Offences24222522 Getting worse

Changes In Dorchester's Crime Rates Over Time

Comparing Dorchester to the UK's Major Cities

Small TownCrime RateRate Difference
Dorchester52.06-
Barnet67.0822% more dangerous
Croydon82.4837% more dangerous
Sheffield90.0542% more dangerous
Bristol90.5242% more dangerous
Coventry102.2449% more dangerous
Leicester111.5953% more dangerous
Liverpool123.0658% more dangerous
Birmingham129.6460% more dangerous
Bradford132.2861% more dangerous
Leeds150.9466% more dangerous

Crime in Dorchester's Neighbourhoods

NeighbourhoodCrime CountCrime RateDanger Rank
Dorchester East25328Second
Dorchester West & Poundbury86369First

Crime in Dorchester During Coronavirus Lockdowns

Looking at the months the UK was in lockdown in 2020 due to Covid-19, how did crime rates in Dorchester change compared to the same month in 2019? The biggest increase in lockdown crime came in December, when Dorchester saw a 433% increase in shoplifting. Dorchester saw a large fall in public order during October, when it fell by 94% compared to October in 2019.

CrimeMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Anti-Social Behaviour+14%+45%+38%+11%+18%+35%-5%-+84%+146%
Bicycle Theft-50%---+400%-----
Burglary-36%-88%-67%-20%-83%--+20%-67%+33%
Criminal Damage and Arson+73%-50%+50%+60%-33%+6%-44%-13%-59%-25%
Drugs-60%+33%-29%+80%+350%-+267%-45%-+200%
Other Crime-----57%-----
Other Theft-42%--46%-57%-33%--46%-7%+20%+23%
Possession of Weapons------+100%---
Public Order-42%-71%-40%-33%+8%--50%-94%-44%-14%
Shoplifting+13%-11%-50%+44%-37%+33%+40%+89%-20%+433%
Theft From the Person-50%-50%----50%----
Vehicle Crime-69%-38%-40%+275%-50%--75%-+40%+67%
Violence and Sexual Offences+27%+15%-10%-14%+40%-25%+69%+8%-5%-3%

Frequently Asked Questions About Crime in Dorchester

What police force serves Dorchester?
Dorchester's local territorial police force is the Dorset Police.

How dangerous is Dorchester?
Dorchester is the third most dangerous small town in Dorset.

What is Dorchester's most common crime?
The most common crimes in Dorchester are violence and sexual offences.

What is the least common crime in Dorchester?
Dorchester's least common crime is theft from the person (inc. pickpocketing).

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