Home safe home: Rossland crime down

Andrew Zwicker
By Andrew Zwicker
May 13th, 2010

In his annual report to the mayor, RCMP Sgt. Rob Hawton confirmed what many of us already know: Rossland is an extremely safe place to live–and it’s getting safer. While presenting the year’s statistics to council, the sergeant noted that Rossland’s is in an enviable position as a relatively crime-free place to live.

Eight of the twelve measured statistical categories had the same or fewer numbers of incidents in 2009 than in 2008. The most common offenses in town–theft, mischief, and possession of stolen goods–dropped from 62 reported incidents in 2008 to 50 in 2009. Assaults (not including sex assaults of which there was one in 2009) dropped dramatically also from 17 cases in 2008 to just nine in 2009.

In a town where leaving doors unlocked is still a luxury many enjoy, it would seem perhaps more doors are being locked and/or fewer people trying to break through them. The number of break and enters dropped from 14 to 11 in 2009. In line with these improvements in the the break and enter statistics, total reported property damage was down nearly 50% in 2009 from 27 to 14 incidences.

On the other hand, feeling safe enough in town to leave doors unlocked has contributed directly to a rise in motor-vehicle thefts, which rose from 7 in 2008 to 11 in 2009. Sgt. Hawton explained that, “in every case of motor vehicle theft in Rossland, the keys were left in the unlocked vehicle or an extra key was available in the glove or other compartments. We’re not talking sophisticated thieves here.”

It is suspected that the one person who was charged and convicted in one auto theft case was also the culprit in the other 10 cases.

Noting that all of the auto thefts in town were crimes of opportunity, Hawton offered a bit of sage advice to Rossland car owners: “If the public takes that extra effort of locking their doors and keeping their keys inside it’s a pretty simple remedy.”

On the drug and alcohol end of the spectrum, the Alpine City is trending in the wrong direction. Drug offences (which only include those cases reported) rose from 6 to 7 cases, and impaired driving charges rose from 1 in 2008 to 4 in 2009.

All in all, Rosslanders enjoy a standard of safety and freedom from crime that is well above the provincial and national averages, and those level of safety continue, for the most part, trend in the right direction.


Categories: General

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