Kerry gardaí have the highest crime-solving rates in the country

Kerry gardaí have the highest crime-solving rates in the country

Gardaí in Kerry have the highest success rate in solving crime, while their colleagues in Dublin have the lowest crime detection rates in the Republic.

Figures obtained from the Central Statistics Office show a wide variety in detection rates across the country’s 28 garda divisions for crime reported in 2019 with 46% of all crimes reported nationwide in 2019 — almost 225,000 offences — marked as solved.

The figures show that 66% of all crimes recorded in Kerry that year have been classified as detected. That is more than twice the rate of Dublin East, which has the lowest detection rate of 32%.

Other parts of the country with above-average detection rates include Cavan/Monaghan, Cork West and Westmeath.

Five of the six garda districts in Dublin are among the lowest success rates in the county, with Meath and Wicklow also below 40%.

However, the Dublin North Central division, which covers the north inner city that has one of the highest crime rates in Ireland, solved 52% of reported crimes in 2019.

The only other garda division with a dominant urban catchment area — Cork City — had a detection rate of 50%.

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The figures, which are based on crimes recorded on the garda Pulse system, show widely varying detection rates for different categories of crime with aggregate rates highly influenced by the success at solving the five most common offences — theft, public order, threats/assaults, drugs and criminal damage — which account for three-quarters of all crime in Ireland.

Some categories of crime, such as drug and public order offences, have average detection rates in excess of 80% as they are usually directly linked to garda enforcement measures where offenders are immediately “identified”. 

In contrast, other types of crime such as sexual offences and burglaries average detection rates below 15%.

More than a quarter of all burglaries in Donegal, Tipperary, and Kerry were solved but less than 10% in Kildare, Wicklow, and parts of Dublin.

Sexual offences, which can involve recent and historic incidents, have detection rates ranging from 38% in Cork West to just 3.5% in Dublin West.

The most common offence — theft, which accounts for three out of every 10 crimes recorded by gardaí — has an average detection rate of 33% — ranging from 23% in the Dublin North division to 52% in Kerry.

The figures show that less than a quarter of all assaults, threats and cases of intimidation are classified as detected in the six Dublin garda divisions, while the national average is 33% with detection rates above 50% in Cavan/Monaghan and Kerry.


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