Posted: Wednesday, 08 February 2012 7:10AM
Major Crimes Up, But Mankato Police Says City Still Safe
MANKATO (TEC News) -- Residential burglaries in Mankato were up 52% in 2011 and that's having an impact on how Mankato police can battle other public safety issues.
According to the Mankato Department of Public Safety's Uniform Crime Report, there were 336 residential burglaries in 2011, up from 221 in 2010.
In addition, commercial burglaries were up 100%, from 28 in 2010 to 56 in 2011.
And the increase is no surprise to Police Commander Amy Vokal.
"When the economy gets tighter, our property crime go up," said Vokal.
Robbery was up 50% from 14 to 21. Thefts were up 15% from 1,233 to 1,416 and auto thefts were up 6% from 48 to 51.
"It's another way to earn money," said Vokal. "It's what the kids call car shopping. They will take anything that's quick, easily accessible, small and that they can pawn."
And it's the moving of the merchandise that is help police solve many of these burglaries and thefts.
"That's how we catch allot of our burglars and thieves," said Vokal. "Pawn records."
But will also catch your attention in the crime report is the number of secondary crimes and actual arrests that were down in 2011.
For example, DUI arrests dropped 22% from 216 in 2010 to 169 in 2011.
"It's not that were less effective," says Vokal.
That bottom line is investigating burglaries takes up a lot of time.
"Whenever we have a persons crime, a crime of violence against a person, and those are major crimes, homicide, rape, robbery, aggravated assault, whenever we have one of those crime it takes an incredible amount of time to investigation," says Vokal. "Taking fingerprints, canvassing neighborhoods, those kind of things take time."
"What you see on the backside is we're no out on the patrols as much," added Vokal.
Total adult arrests were down 13% and total juvenile arrests dropped 9%. 2,085 adults and 383 juveniles were arrested in 2011, compared to 2,410 and 423 in 2010.
Another impact has been traffic tickets.
Traffic citations are down 34%, parking citations are down 27%,
Among the secondary crimes, the most common by numberwere Simple Assaults (up 5%), Disorderly Conduct (down 1%), Liquor Violations (up1%) and Property Damage/Vandalism (up 12%). Drug arrests were up 22% from 199 in 2010 to 243 in 2011.
In in the end, total police calls for service from 2010 to 2011 was virtually the same, down 1% from 32,524 calls in 2010 to 32,177 in 2011.
"We're maintaining," said Vokal. "Overall we're still in a very, very safe community."
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