Sturgeon County sees reduction in crime in 2010

By MorinvilleNews.com Staff

Sturgeon County – Morinville RCMP Staff Sergeant Mac Richards had some good news for Sturgeon County Council Tuesday – crime was down overall in the county in 2010.

Richards told County councillors his statistics show crime, particularly criminal code violations, are trending at or below where they have been in recent years.

“These are down significantly when compared to previous years,” Richards said of criminal code violations. “From a policing side of things, it was a good year.”

2010 saw RCMP dealing with 1,511 criminal code matters in Sturgeon County, a number that is roughly 8 per cent lower than the 1,644 the detachment dealt with in 2009.

The RCMP Staff Sergeant highlighted an increase in drug charges in his report to Council. There were 64 drug calls in 2010 compared to 59 in 2009. Richards pointed out the Morinville Detachment also took part in Project Kompression, a multi-department drug crackdown that resulted in 153 charges being laid in communities surrounding Sturgeon County.

But drugs were not the only crime to see a shift in 2010. Although thefts under $5,000 were down from 2009 numbers, thefts over $5,000 saw an increase from 60 cases to 73.

The reverse trend was experienced in the case of mischief. There were no incidences of mischief over $5,000 reported in 2010, a significant drop from the seven cases reported in 2009. In fact, the County has seen a downward trend in the category since 2007 when 31 cases of mischief over $5,000 were reported. However, mischief under $5,000 saw a slight increase in 2010 with 341 incidences reported, compared to 303 in 2009.

Collisions down but fatalities continue
Another area that has seen a slight decline is the number of collisions in Sturgeon County. RCMP statistics show there were 652 collisions in the County in 2007, 732 in 2008, 625 in 2009 and 617 in 2010. But while collisions are trending downward over the past few years, Richards explained fatalities have unfortunately remained consistent. Last year saw eight traffic fatalities in Sturgeon County in 2010, the same number reported in 2009. Seven fatalities occurred in 2007 and another nine in 2008.

An additional 58 injuries were reported as a result of collisions in Sturgeon County last year, a figure slightly above the 46 reported in 2009 and 54 reported in 2008.

The RCMP Detachment responded to 9,597 calls for service in Sturgeon County in 2010, a number well below the 9,924 calls the detachment received in 2009.

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