The overall crime rate in Arvada decreased for the fourth straight year in 2011.
Last year in Arvada there were a total of 5,664 criminal incidents, a 10 percent drop compared with the five-year average. Here is a brief breakdown of the statistics: sex offenses decreased by 8 percent; burglaries dropped by 28 percent; motor vehicle theft decreased by 25 percent; and drug offenses dropped by 24 percent, compared with the five-year average.
"Looking at Arvada's crime rate in general terms, an overall decrease in crime is a critical component in ensuring Arvada offers a safe community where people want to live, work or visit," Deputy Chief Lynn Johnson said.
Instead of comparing statistics year-to-year, the five-year average was added to provide residents and police with a more accurate picture of overall crime in Arvada.
Upswing in Arsons
An area that did see an increase, and which is outside of the normal range for the five-year snapshot, is the crime of arson. Arson increased by 45 percent from the five-year average of 20 incidents to 29.
Arvada police have made arrests in these cases.
"The crime of arson has been on the radar of our patrol teams, and they have worked very hard at identifying patterns and locations for arson incidents in the city," Deputy Chief Johnson said. "The efforts have shown results as one arson arrest cleared a handful of cases last year."
Scott Pribble, spokesman for the Arvada Fire Protection District, says education is essential to arson awareness and to increase reporting of the crime.
Another crime that often sparks citizen questions is kidnapping. Most kidnapping incidents within Arvada are connected to domestic violence situations, not child abductions.
Unfortunately, crimes against individuals, including aggravated and simple assaults, increased 1 percent in 2011. Assaults typically involve a "heat-of-the-moment" situation with a known individual; for these reasons, assault reports tend to vary each year, according to Arvada police crime analysts.
Decreases in Crime
Arvada's 2011 crime numbers reveal another notable decrease: thefts from vehicles dropped 7 percent during the year.
"The overall decrease in first-degree criminal trespass (car break-in) incidents is critical because it shows the comprehensive work of our police department through our Directed Police Intervention work, making arrests, filing cases and educating the public related to this crime," Deputy Chief Johnson said. "We also hope citizens continue to do their part by locking car doors and removing items of value from their vehicles to help keep these numbers falling."
Police Chief Don Wick was impressed with the overall drop in crime.
"The Arvada Police Department is committed to reducing crime as well as addressing quality of life issues impacting residents," Chief Wick said. "I am extremely proud of the outstanding work of members of the department."
To Find Out More
For 2011 crime statistic, click on the link to the right of the page.
Are you interested in crime statistics for your neighborhood? The Arvada Police Department partners with two organizations to provide volumes of crime data specific to neighborhoods - and the community as a whole. Visit www.RaidsOnline.com or www.CrimeReports.com to view the information.