Crime Statistics Cathedral City Meeting Topic

2021 Cathedral City Crime Statistics Study Session Topic

CATHEDRAL CITY — Less than a month later SafeWise listed Cathedral City as the only city in California’s Coachella Valley to make the 2022 50 Safest Cities list, Police Chief George Crum will provide the city council with his own annual crime statistics update in 2021.

Crum will make his presentation to city council during a study session on Wednesday, April 13. His presentation will consist of a five-year comparison of Part 1 crimes covering the calendar years 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020 and 2021. A second two-year comparison of Part 1 crimes will be presented covering the calendar years 2020 and 2021. The FBI defines Part I crimes as felony homicide, forcible rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, robbery, grand theft auto, and arson.

“2020 and 2021 have been years unlike any of us in public safety have seen or experienced,” Crum wrote in a report prepared for the city council. “Many cities have seen a significant increase in violent crime and a decrease in property crime. On the other hand, many cities have seen significant reductions in violent crime and property crime. Nationwide in 2021, the crime of murder increased 5% in major US cities and homicides increased 44% from 2019 according to the Criminal Justice Council. In my research, several factors have contributed to the increase in homicides across the country, including calls to “Defund the Police”, the number of firearms in circulation in our country, police officers
recruitment and retention issues; and unintended consequences of passed proposals and legislation.

Cathedral City’s totals for each respective year are as follows. 2017 (912 crimes), 2018 (895 crimes), 2019 (750 crimes), 2020 (793 crimes) and 2021 (916 crimes). The number of Part 1 crimes has decreased in some years and increased in others.

The city’s Part 1 crimes over two years saw a 40% decrease in homicides, a 26.6% decrease in rapes and a 3.1% decrease in robberies. The city saw a 30.1% increase in aggravated assaults, a 13.2% increase in burglaries, a 0.3% increase in thefts, and a
41.6% increase in motor vehicle thefts.

Aggravated domestic violence assaults are included in the total number of aggravated assaults and 54 of the 108
the aggravated assault reported was domestic violence.

Overall, Cathedral City saw a 15.5% increase in Part 1 crimes from 2020 to the end of 2021. In 2021, pandemic restrictions eased and more people returned to the market from work and weren’t spending as much time at home as we’ve seen in 2020, according to Crum. Fewer people working from home presented more opportunities for home burglaries and car thefts.

Crum said he looked at Part 1 crimes in surrounding jurisdictions for 2020 and 2021, which found a 40% increase in Part 1 crimes in Palm Springs, a 21% increase in part 1 in Desert Hot Springs and Indio had a 2% decrease in part 1 crimes. Over the past two years, Cathedral City hasn’t seen a significant increase in homicides like surrounding jurisdictions, according to Crum.

“The decrease in most violent crime in our city is attributed to several factors, including a responsive and proactive police department, a relationship of trust with our community we serve, and a good working relationship with our allied agencies in the valley. of Coachella,” Crum said in his report.

Normally, no action is taken on the items of the study session, however, the City Council reserves the right to give specific policy direction and take specific action if necessary.