PRINCE GEORGE, VA (WWBT) – Prince George residents have a reason to feel safer. A newly released report shows an overall drop in crime county wide. The report compares the number of violent and property crimes in 2009 to those in 2010.
Doug Jones is a lifelong Prince George resident who describes the county as quiet and close knit. When it comes to crime in the area Jones has seen his fair share.
"Vandalism, breaking and entering -- things like that," said Jones.
A police crime report is causing Jones and others in the community to breathe a sigh of relief. A crime comparison of 2009 to 2010 shows a 23% drop in violent crimes -- including murder and robbery. When it comes to property crimes such as auto theft and burglary, the county has seen nearly a 4% drop.
Police credit, in part, community programs such as neighborhood watch and Gotcha for the decrease in crime.
"The community is our eyes and ears and if we can enhance that relationship in any way we can, it will have a direct impact on our crime rate," said Captain Eric Young.
Police say the goal is to keep the downward momentum going. Although crime is down overall in the county there are certain types of crimes that are up. Passing fake cash or counterfeiting is up by 200%. Theft from a motor vehicle also jumped by nearly 30%. In many cases victims left items in plain sight.
"Keep your valuables out of sight. You know the old saying out of sight out of mind -- not having your purse and so forth that can be seen," said Young.
Prince George County Police is asking residents to give the department a call if they see any suspicious activity. Police say it's key in combating crime.