COVID CRIME: LPD Sees Decrease in Overall Numbers
LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - As the Lone Star State begins another round of business re-openings and capacity expansions on Friday, May 25, several industries will once again serve their customers for the first time after more than a month of closed doors.
However, one industry that never closed its doors was law enforcement. But, what types of crime trends have they seen in Lubbock with more people at home?
As the city first began to respond to the presence of Coronavirus in the Hub City, officials were not sure what to expect on the other side. Specifically, what this would mean for crime.
However, the numbers in many categories have indicated a positive trend that Lubbock Police hope will continue.
“Data is really important to police work. We use it to decide how we deploy our officers across the city, what types of units we’re putting in different places, and really just making sure we’re tackling areas we know situations are occurring in,” said LPD Public Information Officer, Allison Matherly.
She says while there was nothing abnormal about the start of 2020, “At the beginning of the year with January and February we really saw that most of our crime stats were holding pretty steady to where we were at those points in time for 2019,” there was a major shift, “As the different stay at home measures and disaster declarations were put into place here in the City of Lubbock, which started on March 17th, from that time, through the end of April, we’ve actually seen a general decrease in our crimes outside of a few specific areas,” added Matherly.
The Lubbock Police Department breaks up crime into two distinct categories, persons and property.
Aside from homicides, LPD says there were fewer rape, robbery, aggravated assault and simple assault reports this year than the previous two years during the same time-frame.
Meanwhile, when it comes to property crimes, such as larceny, vandalism and burglary, they too are also showing a decrease.
But, Matherly says there is a concerning upward trend related to thefts from vehicles, which is why she is encouraging residents to remember this piece of advice, “It’s really just a good reminder to make sure your car doors are locked, don’t keep valuables in your car that might entice somebody to break in and those types of things.”
However, she says the department is till looking on the bright-side, “While this time of COVID disaster declarations and stay at home orders has been unprecedented and bizarre for most of us here in the city. It does have, apparently, this effect of limiting crime. That’s the only major correlation we can see at this point.”
A pattern she hopes continues, “We would love to see that trend continue and it’s something that we’ll continue to address and we hope that the city will continue to be our partner in that.”
As mentioned above, homicides are not one of the crimes that have decreased during this period of time. In fact, Lubbock has seen more homicides in 2020 than all of 2019. For a closer look at those numbers, click below.
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