There’s an upside to the pandemic — Manteca’s crime calls have dropped during the past two weeks.
That comes of the heels of the January crime statistics that already showed there was a 5.26 percent drop in the 11 felonies that constitute Part One Crimes tracked by the FBI compared to the first month of 2019. Overall felonies numbered 180, down from 190.
At the same time misdemeanors were up 12.40 percent going from 242 to 272 including a jump in misdemeanor thefts from 58 to 88.
A drop in service calls during the past two weeks is also being reported by law enforcement in Ripon and Lathrop.
It has allowed all three agencies to free up officers to provide more pro-active patrols of commercial areas where many businesses have closed due to the shelter in place order.
The biggest drop in felonies was vehicle theft. In January-to-January comparisons it was down 48.15 percent this year going from 54 to 28. There was no change in the commercial burglary rate as there were 12 committed while there was one more residential burglary this January compared to 9 the previous January.
All classes of burglaries — residential, commercial, auto, and others — plummeted 17.36 percent in Manteca during 2019.
Burglaries numbered 719 last year as opposed to 864 in 2018.
The most stunning number by far based on annual Manteca Police Department crime reports is residential burglaries. There were 110 in 2019 down 32.52 percent from 2018 when there were 163 burglaries.
The number of burglaries is the lowest since at least 2000. It is almost exactly 38 percent less than the peak year for burglaries when there were 1,101 committed in Manteca in 2011 when there were 16,800 less residents than the 85,000 there are today.
More significantly is the burglary rate per 1,000 residents was nearly half in 2019 compared to 2011. That is reflected by 8.4 burglaries per 1,000 in 2019 as opposed to 15.9 in 2011.
The reason why the crime rate per 1,000 used by agencies ranging from the FBI to local police departments is simple — raw numbers for crime don’t provide the perspective of an increase in the number of potential victims.
The crime per 1,000 takes into account population growth to put numeric increases or decreases into perspective for an apple to apple comparison in terms of overall burglaries and felonies. It is the matrix the FBI uses to determine crime rates and the relative safety of communities
Per 1,000 resident data punches large holes in the argument that crime is increasing as Manteca grows.
In raw numbers all felonies were down 7.8 percent in 2019 with 4 of the 11 categories known as Part One Crimes were up — rape, grand theft, arson, and homicides. Misdemeanors were down overall dropping 1.34 percent to 3,164.
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