A DARLINGTON street has hit out after it appeared that a police force recorded several instances of shoplifting at their address, despite not having any shops.

Residents living on Sunningdale Green warned against a sharp fall in house prices and harm to their reputation after latest crime data was released.

However, Durham Police say its crime figures are accurate and data provided by Data.Police.UK anonymises the locations of crimes, recording their approximate location rather than exact locations.

The force also says it does not have any say or control over how this information is presented and published on the Data.Police.UK platform.

Data made available confirmed 35 crimes had been recorded 'on or near Sunningdale Green' since the start of the year.

Out of those crimes, the most crimes committed were Anti-social behaviour (12 crimes) and shoplifting (12 crimes), according to Data.Police.UK.

Further crimes involving violence and sexual offences, criminal damage and arson, public order and a bicycle theft, were also recorded.

But residents believe the figures supplied from Durham Police have been incorrectly recorded for the past three years - but this is disputed by the force.

Residents told The Northern Echo that a high number of those crimes should have been recorded at the address of a nearby supermarket.

Sunningdale Gardens, off Chantilly Avenue, is located towards the back of Asda's Superstore on Whinbush Way.

One resident, who asked to remain anonymous, said: "In the last three years 260 offences in Sunningdale Green of which 124 were shoplifting.

"Asda is on a separate street, it has its own address – it's as though the force has looked on a big map and looked for the nearest residential street and used our address.

“It’s the fact that people might think that people living in this street are bad people, but we’re not.

"People who live here generally buy for a long time, some of have been here since the estate was built in 1983.

"They have had children that have grown up and gone away and then they’ve come back with their children – It’s a nice area."

A spokesperson for Durham Police told us that the data provided on Data.Police.UK represents the approximate location of a crime, not the exact place that it occurred due to anonymisation.

In response to the concerns, the force said the crime figures supplied to Data.Police.UK are accurate and that they have no control on how the figures are presented by Data.Police.UK.

According to Data.Police.UK, crime locations are anonymised to prevent the exact location of a crime being identified.

It says: "The latitude and longitude locations of Crime and ASB (Anti-social behaviour) incidents published on this site always represent the approximate location of a crime — not the exact place that it happened.

"We maintain a master list of anonymous map points.

"When crime data is uploaded by police forces, the exact location of each crime is compared against this master list to find the nearest map point.

"The co-ordinates of the actual crime are then replaced with the co-ordinates of the map point. If the nearest map point is more than 20km away, the co-ordinates are zeroed out. No other filtering or rules are applied."