Attacks on emergency services staff have increased according to Police Scotland figures.

A performance report by the force for 2018/19 and 2019/20 has broken down crime rates for the division in various categories.

Although common assault and serious assault figures are down, from 1,598 to 1,498 and from 93 to 78 respectively, attacks on blue light workers are up.

In 2018/19, there were 203 emergency workers assaulted compared to 247 in the latest statistics.

The number of “bladed/pointed instruments” being found in school has almost trebled from five to 14 and wildfire figures have also increased from 10 to 24.

The latest report also takes in the first registered offences of a new domestic abuse law aimed to tackle coercive and controlling behaviours. Of the 41 cases in the region the victim was female in 36 and five were male.

Chief Superintendent Linda Jones (left), Divisional Commander for Dumfries and Galloway Division, said: “Protecting the public from risk and harm is our priority and Police Scotland officers continue to work hard in local communities to deter and detect crimes in order to keep people safe.

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“While it is pleasing to see a reduction in serious and common assault offences, it is extremely disappointing to see an increase in common assault offences on emergency service workers being recorded. Being assaulted is not part of the job and we will continue to take action to protect our people.

“An increase in wildlife offences, from 10 to 24, has been recorded after an investigation in the Stewartry area resulted in a 64-year-old man being charged and reported to the procurator fiscal.

“Proactive patrols will also continue across our road network and in local communities to deter those intent on putting others at risk by driving dangerously or under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

“We are here to help and support our fellow citizens to keep them safe in all aspects of their lives.”

Fraud offences have increased, from 286 to 318, and reflects a national trend. Speeding offences are down from 4,355 to 4,025, however recorded dangerous driving offences are up from 141 to 150 and drink/drug driving offences are up from 190 to 208.