Katanning has hit an alarming high in reported assaults in the past financial year. WA Police publish monthly statistics for 18 selected offences from their incident management system, which can be broken down by suburb or town. In 2020-21, Katanning’s total number of reported offences across the 18 categories was down 15 per cent compared to the five-year average. But the town had its highest number of reported non-family assaults in the nine years of statistics available online, and family assault reports hit a five-year high. Reported sexual offences were also at their highest in the nine years of records Katanning police Sen. Sgt Carlos Correia said the rises in those offences was concerning, and local authorities had been working closely with victims to uncover historical cases and give them a pathway to speak out. “It is alarming. We do our best to make sure we do our proactive measures to talk to victims and perpetrators ... we do that so we can try and stop it, but we know there are many socio-economic factors to this,” he said. Sen. Sgt Correia said police recently started collaborating with Anglicare to create greater access for victims to support services. “I think it is important we need to raise awareness in community that victims have a voice and can approach police or Anglicare to tell their story,” he said. “This (rise in offences) could be that we are now making ground in community for people to report these offences. They don’t have to be a victim, they shouldn’t be a victim, and that awareness is to make them know that there are other people to talk to and that they don't have to suffer in silence.” Katanning recorded a six-year low in stealing offences and dwelling burglaries, which Sen. Sgt Correia attributed to his officers’ ability to find and charge suspects swiftly. That included a spate of burglaries in the town in March. “In regards to the crime wave, that clearly was an example of police and community exchanging information and good investigative work to quickly identify the suspects and hold them accountable,” he said. Meanwhile, Gnowangerup’s total reported offences across the 18 categories reached a nine-year low, dropping from 120 reported offences in 2018-19 to 93 in 2019-20, and 61 in 2020-21. Gnowangerup’s reduction in crime most notably came from a drop of about 75 per cent in reported dwelling burglaries and stealing offences compared with the previous year.