The increase in sexual assaults reported to Dunedin
Police is not due to increased offending, Southern District
Commander superintendent Andrew Coster says.
Figures released under the Official Information Act revealed
reports to Dunedin Police of sexual assault and related
offences had increased by 49% for the year ending June 30
For the year, there were 109 reports of sexual assaults and
related offences - 36 more than the year before.
Supt Coster said although sexual assaults were significantly
underreported to police, more people were reporting
''It is likely that the continued year-on-year increase in
this area is down to increased reporting, rather than
Police took sexual crime complaints seriously and encouraged
victims to come forward.
''It doesn't matter if it happened yesterday, last week, last
year or a decade ago,'' Supt Coster said.
Rape Crisis Dunedin community educator Anna-Kristy Munro said
90% of rapes went unreported to police.
She agreed the increase was due to more people reporting
offences rather than an increase in rape and sexual abuse.
''This increase in reporting makes it even clearer that the
police should have adequate training in working with
survivors of sexual violence and offer the services of
specialist organisations like Rape Crisis.''
Rape prevention education was crucial in eliminating sexual
''Consent and coercion are terms that need to be understood
and taught to our youth.''