Property crime drives increase in offences in Red Deer

Property crime continues to drive the rise in crime in Red Deer over the past four years.

According to the third quarter crime statistics released by the City of Red Deer Tuesday, crime has risen 19.8 per cent since 2013. The statistics released capture reported crime from January to September of each year.

From January to September, 2013 there were 15,428 criminal code offences reported. In that same time frame this year, that number grew to 18,483.

The major driving force behind the increase is in property crime, which grew from 8,587 in 2013 to 11,941 in 2016 or a 39 per cent increase.

“The increase in property crimes is consistent across the province and beyond, and our Project Pinpoint crime reduction strategy targets those individuals who are responsible for much of that increase in Red Deer,” said Supt. Ken Foster, Red Deer RCMP officer in charge.

“Our focus is on identifying prolific criminals, problem addresses and crime hot spots and putting career offenders before the court in higher numbers than ever.”

Between April 6 and Sept. 6, Project Pinpoint has laid 266 charges and executed more than 175 warrants. Through data analysis and targeted enforcement, police conducted 458 checks on specific people, places and criminal patterns including 139 people on parole or probation and 70 more career criminals with a history of property crime.

Persons crimes, which includes assaults, robbery and homicides, is down from 2013 — dropping from 2,414 to 2,220 or eight per cent.

“We have begun to see reductions in organized and persons crime, through enforcement priorities in our local Annual Policing Plan; we know, however, we still have substantial work to do,” said Mayor Tara Veer, adding council has met with Foster and will have ongoing discussions.

“We have identified the need to focus on reducing local property crimes in addition to our ongoing efforts to reduce organized and persons crime.”

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