Northam has recorded its lowest crime rates in six years, according to the Western Australian Police annual crime statistics.
In the 2017/18 financial year Northam residents committed 1,316 offences, down from 1,867 in the previous year.
October was the busiest month with 177 charges and stealing was the most common offence of the year with 300 counts.
Northam acting senior sergeant Roy George said the opening of the new shopping centre on Gairdner Street has given people new places and more opportunities to steal.
“It’s definitely a problem for us,” he said.
“Not a day goes by where someone doesn’t steal from Coles or Woolworths or Best and Less.
“There is no real golden answer but we are working with the shops and their private security companies to catch these people.”
He said offenders are usually the same people and are generally apprehended.
“Through high quality CCTV we are able to catch them,”
"We do operations every now and then targeting these places and see good results.
"We will keep working on that."
The quietest month for Northam police was February which recorded 102 offences.
The crime rate in Northam has not dropped below 1,400 since the 2011/12 financial year which recorded 1,222.
Senio sergeant George said there is not just one factor that contributed to the lower crime rate.
“You could say some offenders have moved on or been incarcerated,” he said.
“There is a different dynamic in town.
“The community is more aware of their responsibilities when it comes to securing their properties.
“They are getting security screens and alarms and dogs.
“The discounts insurance companies are giving to people who add deadlocks and more security to their properties has had a big impact.”
Senior sergeant George said Northam Police are seeing lower numbers of juvenile offending thanks to a community initiative.
“Shops in town are no longer serving students in a school uniform unless they show an out of leave pass,” he said.
“These has seen less truancy and had been effective.”