Victoria Police released crime statistics for the first half of 2020. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)

Most criminal activity calls down in first half of 2020: Victoria police

More weapons, robberies, less panhandling and sexual assaults in seven and a half months of 2020

Crime data released by Victoria police shows jumps in mischief, weapons and break and enter calls for service in the first half of 2020, with decreases in calls for shoplifting, traffic suspensions and fraud.

VicPD released the downtown core crime statistics on Friday, with numbers reflecting calls for service from Jan. 1 to July 31 from the year 2016 to the year 2020.

Compared to 275 mischief calls in 2019, 2020 has had 312. Weapons calls jumped from 96 in 2019 to 154.

Break and enter calls for service also increased – from 162 in 2019 and to 311 in the first half of this year.

(VicPD handout)

Police recorded decreases in calls for service for a number of crimes including theft, down from 863 in 2019 to 630 in 2020. The same seven-month time period saw a roughly 50 per cent decrease in shoplifting from 133 to 67, a 16 per cent drop in drug calls and a 30 per cent drop in calls for indecent acts.

Traffic suspensions are down from 24 in 2019 to 15 in the first half of 2020. Vehicle thefts however went from 26 to 24.

Panhandling calls for service are also down from 16 in 2019 to nine so far this year.

VicPD Const. Cam MacIntyre said the break and enters and weapons calls are concerning for the police force.

“It’s challenging for us because we have resource challenges and we have other areas of the city that need attention,” he said. “Unless an incident is in progress our priorities will always be life and limb and offences against a person.”

READ ALSO: VicPD reports Victoria, Esquimalt crime rates on the rise

This story was updated Aug. 21 to reflect corrected information from the Victoria Police Department.


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