Albany crime stats could be better - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Albany crime stats could be better

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By Jennifer Emert - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) –  Violent crimes include homicide, rape, robbery and aggravated assault. The number of these crimes is down slightly this year compared to last year.

We had 510 as of August, compared with 516 last year. Property crimes include arson, burglary, larceny, and auto theft. They are up-- 3,459 as of August this year compared to 3079 last year.

Albany's total crime trend is up just over 10% from last year. 

Jane Turner walks the streets of her northwest Albany neighborhood a little more cautiously after several carport burglaries, although she's got a good guard dog in Chico. "Someone told me the best thing for you is a barking dog and a lot of lights," she said.

Jane has both, but last week still became the victim of property crime. "Some things were trampled and my pot was broken and then I opened my gate and the little latch that was on it was torn off."

Neighborhood Scout's website shows that in Albany you have a one in 14 chance in being the victim of property crime and a one in 147 chance of being the victim of a violent crime. While Albany Police dispute some of the statistics, they don't dispute the crime problem.

 "Crime is up in Albany and it's not one particular area it's all of Albany," said  Phyllis Banks, Albany Police Media Director.

On the east side Exie Bodiford's daughter insisted on bars for her windows and doors. "She worries about me opening the door, sitting on the porch, somebody coming by," said Bodiford.

She told us more police are riding her street and police are targeting other hot spots where crimes have spiked.

"When we have a large number of entering autos and motor vehicle thefts in an area that will become a hot spot where we would focus a concentration on a special operation would be put together," said Banks.

Putting more cops on the streets has helped, so has more neighborhood watch programs acting as the police department's eyes and ears. Improving relationships between police and citizens have more neighbors willing to call.

Just the same, Albany Police urge everyone to stay at high alert when they're out.

We did find a slight discrepancy in the numbers. The Albany Police Department says the number of crimes here last year was almost 5% fewer than what Neighborhood Scout reported. The Police Department is working on reviving their Neighborhood Crime watch Sign Program to let criminals know which neighborhood are watching for them.

Violent crimes include homicide, rape, robbery and aggravated assault. The number of these crimes is down slightly this year compared to last year. We had 510 as of August, compared with 516 last year.

Property crimes include arson, burglary, larceny, and auto theft. They are up-- 3,459 as of August this year compared to 3,079 last year.

Albany's total crime trend is up just over 10% from last year.

Police say they're noticed an increased number of calls to their 911 center from neighbors with the description of suspicious activity they've noticed on their streets and neighborhoods and through their efforts the city's crime rate is down eight percent for August.

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