Police: Violent crime and property crime down in Albemarle – The Stanly News & Press
Violent crime in Albemarle was down about 41% last year, according to the police department. annual reviewhighlights of which were presented to City Council on Monday evening.
Murders fell 50% (three were reported in 2021 compared to six in 2020) and aggravated assaults fell 52% (56 occurred in 2021 compared to 116 in 2020), although rapes and robberies have increased slightly.
Total property crimes also fell by around 14%, incidents of burglary (-32%), motor vehicle theft (-19%), arson (-14%) and theft (-9%) having all fallen.
When comparing the first half of 2022 with the first half of last year, the numbers are also encouraging. According to police data, 50 violent crimes were committed in the city in 2022, down 14 from the same time in 2021, representing a decrease of 22%. Robberies in particular have decreased; five have occurred this year, compared to 12 that were reported at the same time last year.
“It is very important as a police service that we understand what is causing our crime, that we understand some of the factors and that we are proactive rather than reactive,” police chief Jason Bollhorst told the Council.
While the numbers are encouraging, there’s still work to be done, Bollhorst said, citing the 2020 North Carolina Crime Index rate, showing that Albemarle’s total crime rates (6,570.2) , violent crimes (905.2) and property crimes (5,665) were even higher. than the state, although they all declined last year. Figures are determined using a calculation of crimes per 100,000 people.
The department is working to reduce crime this year to match the state’s 2020 crime rate of 2,775.5. To do this, Bollhorst told the Council, the department would need to reduce crime by 44% for the remainder of this year.
“It’s a goal we’ve set for ourselves as we complete the next six months,” Bollhorst said.
To achieve this, he stressed the importance of strengthening the department’s engagement with the community, adding that residents are encouraged to contact the police if they know of any problems or witness any crime.
“Going out into the community and then having our officers engage with the public with problem-solving policing, that will be the root of our strategy,” Bollhorst said. “We can’t do this alone, we need the community with us, working as a team.”
To this end, Bollhorst also revealed the results of a Community survey in 31 questions which was recently posted on the ministry’s website and completed by approximately 140 residents.
When asked how satisfied are you with the overall performance of the department, the responses were quite mixed: 41% said “a lot” or “to a large extent”, compared to 33% who said “a little “. or not at all.” Another 26% of respondents were only “somewhat” satisfied.
It seems that many people also don’t think the police are addressing the issues that concern them most, as only 24% of people answered positively to the question, while around 45% believe the police could do a better job.
When asked to select the top issues they believe are most important in the community, drug abuse (selected by 29% of respondents) was voted the top issue, followed by drug abuse issues. -shelter or transients (10%) and burglaries/thefts (automobiles) and traffic problems/residential speeding (both 9%).
Some of the positives from the survey include that people feel quite safe in the city during the day and they think officers generally treat people fairly, are respectful and care about members of the community.
The police department also plans to send an internal questionnaire to city staff to better understand how they view the service.
To better engage and build trust with the public, Bollhorst mentioned several ideas, including holding town hall-style meetings, interacting with different segments of the community, and launching the Coffee with a Cop program. The National Night Out event, where police meet and interact with residents, will take place Oct. 15 at YMCA Park.