“We were very, very busy in 2016,” Lt. Kerry Curtis says.
Nearly 40,000 crimes were reported last year in Medford alone.
“We handled more cases than we have in several years if not the history of MPD,” Lt. Curtis says.
The annual report provides the agency with an overall look at crime within the city, and it’s not going away.
“We live in a large enough community where there’s going to be crime,” Lt. Curtis says, “we have criminals, we have a jail that’s full of them.”
It’s an issue that’s not overlooked by local business owners like Jed Evers. His coffee shop was recently broken into, despite added security measures implemented last fall.
“We have hired security just to patrol in the evenings and in the middle of the night,” owner, Jed Evers says.
According to the report the largest crime increases were among homicides, robberies, and vehicle break-ins, while rape, identity theft, and DUII’s all saw decreases.
But Lieutenant Kerry Curtis says numbers don’t always show the full picture.
“We’re down in DUI’s,” Lt. Curtis says, “Does that mean there’s less DUI drivers? We’d like to think so, we’d like to thank that people are being responsible, taking the proper precautions, but it also could be attributed to the fact that we’re very busy.”
Residential burglaries, car thefts, and credit card fraud all saw increases too. And while police say it’s concerning, they say many of the cases are ending in arrests.
“We look at those clearance rates as really the investigative work that goes into solving the crimes that are happening in our community and at 80% we’re above what I would believe to be national standards,” Lt. Curtis says.
MPD adds there are things you can do to avoid becoming a victim, including locking your home and car, removing valuables from plain sight, or installing home surveillance which you can register with the department.
To see the full statistics click HERE.