Saturday, July 15, 2006

Chief Keller sees drop in Serious Crime 34%

For the first half of 2006 Serious Crime is down 34% from last year, after rising 17% in late 05. '' This shows that the city is not going to let crime run rampant, and you have to give the credit to Chief Keller and all of the members of the Kingston Police Department. They are true professionals, who do an excellent job for this city'' said Blaber. I talked with the Chief last week and you can just tell how much he cares about the city and making it a safe place to live for the residents of this community.

What is a serious crime? Using FBI standards, the city defines serious crime as murder, rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, larceny and vehicle theft.

"I am pleased that (crime statistics) are down over last year, and I am cautiously optimistic that we will maintain that downward trend," Keller said. "It has gone down a substantial amount over a six-month period."

Among the new crime statistics:
* There were 13 reports of motor vehicle-related thefts during the first half of 2006, compared to 25 in the second half of 2005 and 23 in the first half of 2005.
* There were 58 burglary reports, compared to 56 and 59.
* There were 26 robbery reports, compared to 37 and 35.
* There were 18 reports of aggravated assault, compared to 19 and 15.
There also were four reported rapes during the first half of 2006, compared to seven in late 2005 and four in early 2005.
Kingston has had no reported murders or negligent manslaughters so far in 2006, and there also were none during all of 2005.

Keller could not say with certainty why serious crime has been down this year, but he noted that his department has put extra officers on the streets of Midtown - an area where criminal activity has been a problem over the years - thanks, in large part, to money provided by a state crime-fighting program called Operation Impact.

He also said his department has been successful in reducing the number of vehicle break-ins by arresting perpetrators and urging the public to keep valuable items out of view in their cars.

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