October 10, 2007

Crime stats take 6 months to come out and are still questionable

What is most interesting about all this was that LAAG pressed LASD for crime statistics shortly after they were "unofficially" leaked to the city no doubt as fodder in support of the $20 million in funds just expended [blown] on a new Lakewood Sheriff's substation. Of course the statistics were never provided to LAAG. We had to wait for the 2006 stats to get posted in April 2007. click here to read related article

After the article below came out then Fender of course comes out with the following:

Lakewood, California - Topping the News
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
Issue 101 - Council Recap

Statistics verified
Responding to a local news media report, Captain Dave Fender of
the Lakewood Sheriff's Station reported to council members that
serious crimes in Lakewood (called Part I crimes in FBI reports)
were down about 16 percent in 2006 while "violent crimes" (a
component of the serious crimes in FBI reports) was up 10
percent. Putting the numbers in perspective, Fender said
"violent crimes" exceeded previous year's total by 36 crime
incidents, while the category of serious crime was down overall
by more than 500 incidents.

All the 2005-2006 numbers from the FBI site (As of Oct 2007):

City Lakewood Population 81192

Violent crime 2006 407
Violent Crime 2005 371
% Change up 9.70

Murder and non-negligent manslaughter 2006 4
Murder and non-negligent manslaughter 2005 0
% Change up 400.00

Forcible rape 2006 11
Forcible rape 2005 13
% Change - 15.38

Robbery 2006 220
Robbery 2005 193
% Change up 13.99

Aggravated assault 2006 172
Aggravated assault 2005 165
% Change up 4.24

Property crime 2006 2255
Property crime 2005 2788
% Change - 19.12

Burglary 2006 394
Burglary 2005 418
% Change - 5.74

Larcenytheft 2006 1427
Larceny/theft 2005 1880
% Change - 24.10

Motor vehicle theft 2006 434
Motor vehicle theft 2005 490
% Change - 11.43

Arson 2006 11
Arson 2005 16
% Change - 31.25

FBI, local crime stats don't always match
Lakewood, L.B. both reported better numbers.
By Tracy Manzer, Staff writer
Article Launched: 09/24/2007 10:41:49 PM PDT

Conflicting results were found in comparisons of local and federal crime statistics for two cities - Lakewood and Long Beach - with the release of a federal crime report on Monday.

According to the FBI's 2006 Crimes in the United States report, violent crimes have increased by more than 9 percent in Lakewood - due in part to a 400-percent jump in murders, with zero reported in 2005, compared with 4 in 2006.

Long Beach saw an increase of less than 1 percent, according to the FBI.

But those numbers do not match crime statistics released by both cities earlier this year.

Lakewood listed an impressive 16-percent plummet in violent crimes and Long Beach boasted a 4-percent drop, and its fourth consecutive year of decrease in violent crimes for 2006, at the beginning of the year.

The federal crime report is put together each year with information provided by regional, state and local law enforcement agencies, said Federal Bureau of Investigation spokeswoman Laura Eimiller.

Minor differences can occur with changes to data released earlier in the year by local agencies, Eimiller said.

Some data may be corrected, some statistics require updates and typos are possible, she said. Long Beach Deputy Police Chief J.J. Craig said crimes listed in the federal report under violent crimes - murder and manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery and aggravated assault - make up only a portion of all Part I crimes.

Not all Part I crimes are violent crimes, but all violent crimes are in the Part I category, he explained.

"It's almost a sub-category," Craig added, noting at least eight other crime classifications that fall within the entire Part I crimes category and could be included in the local statistics released last March.

Lakewood spokesman Donald Waldie said Monday that the violent crimes statistics released by then-Mayor Larry Van Nostran at the state of the city address in January came straight from the Lakewood Sheriff's Station.

Van Nostran referred to the crimes as serious in the address. Waldie said the term is one the city prefers to violent crimes, but the classification remains the same.

Sheriff's authorities in charge of tracking statistics for Lakewood could not be reached for comment.

Perhaps more puzzling was the exact match for property crime statistics between the two cities and the federal report; Long Beach saw a 5-percent decrease and Lakewood a sizable 19-percent dive.

According to the federal crime report, violent crimes were up 1.9 percent nationwide, while property crimes across the country fell by nearly the same margin, dropping to their lowest level since 1987.

While the rate of violent crimes - calculated at roughly 473.5 per 100,000 inhabitants - rose for the second straight year, it is the third lowest total in the past two decades, according to the report.

Some local cities - like Artesia, Bellflower and Paramount - bucked the national increase while cities such as Avalon, Carson and Downey followed the trend to varying degrees.

Most of the local jurisdictions released their crime statistics in January and attributed positive gains to better community policing and community involvement.

Craig noted Monday that many of the decreases that occurred in Long Beach in 2006 have continued into this year, including further reductions in aggravated assaults - a category within violent crimes that covers a range of violations including attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon and battery.

Tracy Manzer can be reached at tracy.manzer@presstelegram.com or (562) 499-1261.

On the Net: Crime Statistics.

Lakewood Accountability Action Group™ LAAG | www.LAAG.us | Lakewood, CA
A California Non Profit Association | Demanding action and accountability from local government™

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