APD: Most violent crime is down, but non-fatal shootings are up
March 31, 2019 10:19 PM
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Mayor Tim Keller and the Albuquerque Police Department have released the latest crime statistics of 2019.
Property crimes, like theft and burglaries, have had a 17% drop from 2017 to 2018.
"I want to remind folks, up until 2018 more or less, we were actually going the wrong direction in respect to almost every crime statistic," Keller said. "Now, we are at least continuing to go in the right direction in almost every key statistic."
Violent crime has remained virtually unchanged. Robberies, which are considered a violent crime, have been cut in half since 2017. However, that progress isn't shown in the numbers because gun violence is on the rise.
Non-fatal shootings are up 12%. Keller said he will announce a multi-pronged plan to tackle gun violence later this week.
"For nearly a decade, gun violence has become ever more pervasive and is often connected to other crimes," Keller said.
APD says to end violence, the root of the problem needs to be addressed: drugs.
"Crimes like opiate abuse and methamphetamine abuse drives people's actions towards violence in a lot of cases," said Albuquerque Police Chief Grier. "The police can do so much. This is really a public health issue on one end. It's a societal issue on another end."
The statistics are compiled with the same methodology that the previous administration used and include a year-to-year comparison for the same time period, which is January 1 through March 31.
Keller said that more cops on the street — more traffic stops — and a concentrated effort at reducing robberies and auto theft has led to a reduction in robberies, car theft, and burglaries.
There have also been changes in the court system.
"The most important component of deterrence is speed... it's not just severity," said District Attorney Raul Torrez.
Torrez said that criminals, in a way, should be treated like children.
"If your child does something that you don't want them to do, you can threaten them with very severe, but uncertain punishment, a year and a half from now. Or you could, in the moment, quickly and with certainty, correct that behavior," he said.
Back in 2015, it would take prosecutors around 170 days after an arrest to get the criminal case to the courtroom.
Now the District Attorney's office has the number of days down to 20, and Torrez says it's not a coincidence that crime rates have fallen.
Updated: March 31, 2019 10:19 PM
Created: March 31, 2019 06:16 PM
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