Decrease in property crime in Delta

THERE’S been a decline in the number of residential and commercial break and enters in Delta in the first quarter of 2018 compared to the same time frame in 2017. Thefts from auto are also down 35%.

There were 51 residential break and enters from January through March in 2018, down from 61 during the same period in 2017. Commercial break and enters are down even more at 33 as compared to 49 last year.

Theft from auto showed a more precipitous drop – going down to 158 incidents reported to police in the first quarter of 2018, compared to 245 last year.

“We think the decrease in these numbers is due to the strategic approach we’re taking,” says Superintendent Harj Sidhu, head of operations for Delta police. “We make it a priority to keep on top of emerging trends such as in property crime, and we share that information among our patrol staff and specialty units. Additionally, our model of zone ownership ensures that sergeants and constables are all responsible for certain areas of the city, and follow up regularly on any outstanding issues.”

Sidhu acknowledges that there were a number of complaints of theft from auto in April – with 46 incidents reported to police so far this month, primarily in Ladner and North Delta. While it is too soon to indicate if this is a spike, Delta police are currently working on a strategy to better address thefts from auto.

Persons offences showed an unusual increase in the first quarter, rising from 90 during the same time last year to 122 offences in the last three months. The increases were primarily in assaults, including common assault, assault with a weapon and aggravated assault.

“Delta experienced a number of youth-related assaults during that time frame, some of which included weapons,” says Sidhu. “However we do not feel this is a trend, and we’re confident that we are on top of this issue, working with our school liaison and youth officers, as well as community partners.”

In regard to broader trends, in July 2017 the Canadian Center for Justice Statistics released Delta’s Crime Severity Index for 2016, which showed a decrease of 35% in violent crime. There was also an increase in property crime, resulting in a slight decline overall in Delta’s Crime Severity Index. Delta continues to enjoy a low crime rate in comparison to the region, the province and the country.

The 2018 first quarter statistics and other statistical information can be found at Delta Police also share statistics on a monthly basis with the Delta Police Board.