Crime data tracked by the Kokomo Police Department show that, overall, both property and violent crimes continued to decline locally in 2018. Calls for Service also went down in 2018.
The crime data collected is submitted to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) for inclusion in its annual Uniform Crime Report (UCR), which tracks Homicide, Rape, Burglary, Theft, Motor Vehicle Theft, and Aggravated Assault.
According to KPD data, in 2018:
· Violent crimes (homicide, rape, robbery, and aggravated assault) declined by 13 percent with 364 crimes reported in 2018 versus 417 in 2017.
· Property crimes (Burglary, Theft, and Motor Vehicle Theft) also declined by 14 percent, with 1,426 crimes in 2018 against 1,669 in 2017
· Theft reached a 24-year low with just 1,036 thefts in 2018, only the third time that number fell below 1,200 since 1995. That number represents an 11% drop over 2017.
· Burglary dropped 25% with only 309 reported in 2018 and is at its lowest number since 2000.
· Aggravated Battery declined by 24%, with 248 being reported in 2018.
· There were four homicides in 2018, down from six the previous year, a drop of 33%.
· Unfortunately, the number of robberies increased, from 48 to 70, an increase of 45%.
· The number rapes reported also increased from 36 to 42, an increase of 16%.
Mayor Greg Goodnight said the data points to a continuing trend for the city.
“We are encouraged that both property and violent crimes are decreasing,” Goodnight said. “It reflects well on our department and our community policing efforts.”
How crimes are being reported makes the decrease even more impactful, according to Goodnight.
“We’ve seen an uptick in the number of people willing to report crimes that may have gone unreported in the past,” Goodnight said. “So we are seeing an increasing willingness to report crime while at the same time experiencing a decrease in overall crime.”
Police chief Rob Baker said the efforts of the Kokomo Police Department are what makes the difference.
“The women and men of the Kokomo Police Department have a high standard of professionalism,” said Baker. “Their efforts are a primary factor in the health and success of our community.”
Calls for Service
According to numbers provided by Howard County Dispatch, Calls for Service declined in Kokomo as well. Calls for Service generally refer to calls made by the public requiring the assistance of police officers to resolve, correct or assist a particular situation.
In 2018, KPD received 43,960 calls for service, down from 51,441 in 2017, a drop of 14%.
The software used by the Kokomo police Department changed in 2014, so the way Calls for Service are logged changed as well. Under the new system basic administrative calls were added to calls logged, including civil process, DARE classes, meetings, range practice, training, and transporting prisoners. Despite the additional calls being tallied, Calls for Service have decreased each year since the change.