There has been a drop in property crimes in Williams Lake, RCMP Insp. Warren Brown told city council during a quarterly update of 2013 stats.
“We’re lower than this time in 2012 with an overall 20 per cent reduction,” Brown said. “There’s a goal provincially to reduce property crime by 10 per cent, so we are above that. It’s very positive.”
Calls for service are up from the same time last year, but Brown suggested the increase doesn’t necessarily mean that’s an increase in crimes.
“It could be for disturbances and noise complaints, those types of things.”
Brown also discussed the detachment’s annual performance plan in crime reduction, building relationships with First Nations communities, employee investment and domestic violence.
“Under crime reduction, the prolific offender program continues to be our main focus. That is to target offenders who are most active and certainly encourage them and provide them with opportunities to change their environment.”
Other crime reduction efforts include targeting individuals with education and awareness at the school level, integration patrols, engaging community policing and targeting “crack shacks” and other drug houses, where criminals often download their property expenses.
Cpl. Eric Chrona has joined the detachment as the new corporal in charge of First Nations policing.
“That brings our section up to full staff for the first time in just over two years,” Brown said. “Cpl. Chrona comes with a very robust background and is a welcome addition to our detachment. In the short time he’s been here, he’s been very focused in the Aboriginal communities.”
Chrona told the Tribune he was stationed in Telegraph Creek, north of Terrace, before accepting the position in Williams Lake.
For the first time in the history of its operation, the RCMP will be looking at itself more closely to endeavour to improve communication and ensure there is a high level of accountability.
“At the end of the day I expect a very high standard of police work and giving the employees the training, guidance and opportunities we can so we can achieve that,” Brown said.
Domestic violence reports continue to be on par with 2012, however, Brown said that is due to a committed effort by stakeholders and groups in the community engaged in offering programs.
“We have a domestic violence unit in our detachment. We have a new interagency case assessment team (ICAT) that looks at high risk domestic assault and behaviours.”
Domestic violence work is being done in both First Nation and Non-First Nation communities, Brown said.