An influx of property crimes has Regina sitting at the top of the country-wide Crime Severity Index, with police saying it’s not nearly as bad as it seems..
The national crime rate did not change in 2016.
A total of 5,697 incidents reported in Regina, a rise of 14 per cent from 2015-16, represents nearly 7/8ths of the overall crime committed in the city.
Chief Evan Bray says when Regina saw a population growth, it kept its small town feel, and for many residents, that attitude remains.
Bray says this could be a problem.
“The reality is in 2017 as I’m standing here, is we have a property crime problem here in Regina,” he said.
“It makes up a huge portion of these numbers, 7/8ths of our CS number is made up of property crime and we need to find a way to combat that,” Bray added.
The violent crime numbers also saw a spike, due in large part to a slew of assaults and attempted murder charges laid.
In the meantime, Statistics Canada reports there were nearly 1.9-million Criminal Code incidents, excluding traffic offences, reported by police last year, which is about 27-thousand, 700 more than in 2015.
But the severity of the crimes increased slightly for the second year in a row, largely driven by a continued increase in the rate of police-reported fraud, which was up by 14 per cent from 2015.
That includes identity fraud and identity theft.
While Saskatchewan was at, or near the top in some of these key categories this past year, RCMP “F” Division provided some numbers this morning which highlight what they refer to as “positive trends.”
According to an RCMP media release, property crime many parts of Saskatchewan has seen a steady decline over the last 10 months.
The RCMP also says the level of violent crime remained essentially unchanged in Saskatchewan.