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Sandy PD reports 2011 crime rates lowest in the last decade

Thursday, February 23, 2012812 views

According to the latest crime reports for 2011, the Sandy Police Department is doing a good job. On Jan. 24, Sandy Police Chief Stephen Chapman reported to the Sandy City Council that violent crimes decreased by 18.5 percent and property crimes by 7.4 percent last year.

“I was somewhat surprised that the rates were as low as they were,” he said. “We’ve noticed over the last few years that we’ve been making progress, particularly in some areas like vehicle burglaries. We feel like we’re doing a good job and that it’s being noticed.”

The statistics were gathered from eight areas around Sandy. The areas below 1300 East cover to Sandy’s western border. They include Historic Sandy, the Jordan area around City Hall, the South Towne mall area and the Auto Mall.

The remaining four areas stretch from 1300 East to Sandy’s eastern border near the base of the canyons. It includes the Bluff area from 11400 South to the Draper border, the Dimple Dell area, the Canyon area from the northern border of Dimple Dell Park to Little Cottonwood Road, and the Flat Iron area, which is everything north of Little Cottonwood Road to Creek Road.

While some statistics like arson rates stayed about the same, many categories saw significant decreases.

Aggravated assaults were down from 75 in 2010 to 52 in 2011. Burglaries also saw a significant drop in 2011. Commercial thefts were down from 129 in 2010 to 74 last year while residential thefts went from 378 to 339.

There have been some increases over last year. Rape statistics are up slightly from 2010, which had 17 reported. In 2011, 22 rapes were reported. There was a slight rise in graffiti incidents, up from 117 to 143 last year.

One statistic the police are very concerned about is the rise in vehicle thefts, Chapman said. In 2010, 134 vehicle thefts were reported. Last year, that number increased to 176.

“Overall, I’m very satisfied with the numbers. We’ve seen a slight increase in vehicle thefts and we’re working on that,” Chapman said. “It’s not a terrible increase, but it’s something we’re concerned with because it is creeping up on us a little bit.”

Theft in general saw a decrease last year, dropping from 1,618 to 1,513 in 2011. Vehicle burglaries dropped from 702 to 631. Robberies also decreased in 2011. The police department reports that 27 incidents happened in 2011, which is down from 34 in 2010.

Chapman credits the overall drop in numbers to the combined effort of the Sandy Police Department, the Volunteers in Police Service and residents. The Sandy PD reported that its volunteers contributed over 14,000 hours and saved the city more than $194,000 in 2011.

“We have a great city and police department, and good officers that work hard,” Chapman said. “It’s a team effort that includes the citizenry, volunteers that help us with the VIPS program and some police officers that do proactive work only. We’re working together as a group. We couldn’t do it all our selves – it’s something that we do together.”

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