Number of violent crimes in Mission rose in 2018

But incidents of domestic violence have dropped according to police statistics

Mission experienced a rise in the number of violent crimes and business break-and-enters in 2018.

However, incidents of domestic violence decreased from the previous year.

Mission RCMP Insp. Annette Fellner presented the year-end crime statistics to Mission council last week.

According to the report, there were 614 violent crime calls in 2018, up 23 per cent from the previous year.

Fellner said one of the factors that have driven up those numbers is a change in what is considered a violent crime.

She said the 2018 stats also include “harassing communications and some of the regular assaults” as well.

“Not to say it still isn’t a concern for us that we’re seeing an increase, but we are seeing part of that because harassing phone calls is now being mixed in when they used to be separate,” Fellner said.

Cases of domestic violence fell by nine per cent, with 118 cases reported in 2018.

In her report, Fellner said the RCMP works on a monthly basis in “collaboration with other partners, such as Crown counsel, social workers, police-based Victim Services and Abby PD to discuss and implement strategies targeting high-risk domestic offenders.”

In 2018, there were 64 reports of business break-ins (up 23 per cent), 70 calls for residential break-and-enters (down one per cent) and 50 calls for other structures (up 11 per cent). Other structures include detached garages, sheds and out-buildings.

The number of auto thefts decreased by seven per cent, with 160 reports in 2018. Thefts from vehicles also declined, by four per cent, as 389 reports were filed.

The 538 Mental Health Act calls was a three per cent increase over 2017.

Property crime, including bike thefts, rose 11 per cent, with 1,905 incidents taking place.

Fellner said while the incidents of property crimes have risen, there were still 1,000 fewer calls than the mark hit in 2015, when property crime in Mission was a major concern – forcing the creation of the Prolific Offender Suppression Team.

Other stats include the department receiving 15,106 calls for service, compared to 15,515 in 2017. That includes Mission and the provincial areas (such as Stave East) served by the department.

In the District of Mission alone, police received 13,585 calls compared to 13,709 the previous year.

The cells at the Mission detachment held 673 prisoners in 2018, compared to 625 in 2017.

Police also performed 2,488 criminal record checks, obtained 470 sets of digital fingerprints, and processed 1,147 disclosure requests.

Road safety statistics for the year include that the department handled 269 seatbelt infractions, 817 speeding incidents (including 82 excessive speeding impounds), 239 use-of-electronic-device tickets, 20 impaired driving and six fatal collisions (five more than 2017).

Fellner said she will meet with council later this month to discuss and establish the department’s priorities for 2019.

She also plans to host another public forum, sometime in April, to go over crime statistics and speak to the public regarding concerns.

Mission RCMP is also planning to hold an open house at its detachment on June 9.

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