Encouraging Numbers Released In Salisbury Crime Report - 47 ABC - Delmarva's Choice

Encouraging Numbers Released In Salisbury Crime Report

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SALISBURY, Md. - The city of Salisbury has released its annual report on crime in the city. Looking at the data, there seems to be an encouraging trend toward decreasing violent crimes in Salisbury.  Despite the gains, Police Chief Barbara Duncan says there's still work to be done.

"We are by no means finished," Chief Duncan tells WMDT.

In the report, which compares 2013 complaints to those over the past 10 years, robbery, aggravated assault, and burglary each decreased by more than 30 percent.  Rape, motor vehicle theft, and arson also dropped.

Salisbury mayor Jim Ireton credits the collaborative efforts of city, county, and state agencies, "we're also working with our partners in all facets of crime reduction and that's not something that's happened here before."

Salisbury Police Chief Barbara Duncan believes the department's efforts to mentor within the community have also affected change.

One such effort, 2013's "Operation Quiet Summer," a program where officers met with family members of 20 teens in the Dover Dale neighborhood after a spike in minor assaults, drug sales, and vehicle thefts.

"You had people interested in offering ways out of that lifestyle, before it became too problematic for them to be productive in our community," says Chief Duncan.

One area of frustration, for the chief is thefts, which only dropped 12.4 percent.  A lukewarm statistic she attributes to a rising narcotics problem and a lack of funding for officers.

"We're looking at how we can refine what we're doing now.  How can we best deploy the resources we have now without burning them out."

Despite not being able to hire more officers, the Salisbury police department is working to improve its effectiveness in the community.

In October, they rolled out nine police vehicles with dashboard cams to help improve their eyes on the street.

In terms of the crime report, there were 2,091 complaints for Part One crimes listed, just shy of the city's goal to get it below 2,000.      

The full report can be found HERE.

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