Throughout Richmond, police are seeing a significant decrease in burglaries. So far this year, they are down 19% when compared to the first half of last year.
The police chief is calling this the biggest success story of the year so far.
The 19% decline includes residential and commercial burglaries.
When it comes to home break-ins this year, Richmonders have seen 582 of them. When compared to 741 in the first six months of last year, that's a 21% decrease.
On the commercial end, so far, there have been 20 fewer incidents this year compared to the first half of last year. That's a 17% decline.
Authorities are crediting some targeted initiatives for the decreases.
Richmond Police Major Scott Booth says this year, RPD has gotten a jump on identifying chronic offenders.
"So who lives in these neighborhoods that has been known to pull these crimes before," Booth says police are asking. "Who is out on probation? Who is a known burglar? "I think we've been able to identify them and track them and lead that to making some effective arrests."
The department is also trying something different. Normally, you think of undercover operations when it comes to gangs and drugs. Now, plain-clothes officers are hitting the streets targeting burglaries.
Police are also enhancing some of the more traditional patrols, by car, bike and foot, which offer high visibility.
The department isn't taking all of the credit. Booth says communication with the community is helping.
"Just call and let us know," Major Booth added. "I would rather have an officer respond out on a frivolous complaint than not respond at all. So we can get that information, real time information on what's going on in the neighborhoods."
Police say those tips can be given anonymously. If you see something officers should know about, call Crime Stoppers at 780-1000.
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