Major crime down
the Naperville Police Department took out his crime statistics for 2021. Chief Jason Arres and his senior staff shared that major crime across all areas, including armed robbery, burglary and motor vehicle burglary, has decreased compared to 2019 and 2020.
One murder was reported in 2021 and felony sexual assaults increased by one case from 20 cases in 2020 to 21 the following year. Arres said that in 17 of the 21 cases, the victim and assailant knew each other. “I think the theme I really want to get to is that we’re not a crime-free city, we’re just a very safe city. And [if] you compare us to other cities in Illinois and across the country the same size as us, you’ll see it,” Arres said.
Although major crime was down 33% overall, the chief acknowledged that might not seem the case for the community. He attributed this perception to the increased push of social media and Naper Notify.
What has increased is the number of firearms that the police have recovered and the number of firearms fired. In 2021, police recovered 146 guns compared to 82 in 2020 and 73 in 2019. 12 shots were fired in our city in 2021 compared to eight the year before. “Not necessarily where there were always people or people were getting hit, but any kind of shooting is something we don’t want to see,” Arres said. “So the flip side is that we’re very proactive as a policing agency: visible in the community, doing traffic checks, proactive policing.”
Another increase the department has seen is the number of drivers fleeing and evading police when they should be stopping for a traffic stop. That number doubled from 51 in 2020 to 102 in 2021. crime,” Arres said.
New online form
Arres said partnership with the community is key to continuing to keep Naperville safe. To help pursue this, the ministry has launched a online form for the community to request free in-person trainings or presentations for groups like a homeowners association or other community meetings.
Naperville News 17’s Aysha Ashley Househ reports.
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