New city crime stats show violent crime is down
Published Thursday, July 5, 2012 4:25PM CST
Last Updated Thursday, July 5, 2012 5:37PM CST
New crime statistics released Thursday show that violent crime rates in the city have gone down.
The report also found assaults with weapons were down. In 2010, assaults with a weapon declined by more than 10 per cent. In 2011, the report says, they went down another nine per cent.
Police credit their violent crime reduction strategy with the downward trend. Police said targeting particular areas and gathering intelligence on suspected criminals is working.
The announcement came just hours after a 56-year-old man was stabbed repeatedly at an apartment block on Arlington Street. A 23-year-old man is now facing attempted murder charges.
City Councilor Harvey Smith said the report is misleading because it doesn’t directly track stabbings. Smith said stabbings are becoming epidemic in the city.
“They’re occurring all the time – every weekend. There is rarely a day I don’t hear of a report of a stabbing,” said Smith.
Smith said the new numbers are too vague. He wants to see the exact number of stabbings, who committed them and where they happened.
“Until we know the picture, we can’t in effect deal with the problem,” said Smith.
Armando Martins lives around the corner from the Arlington Street stabbing that sent one man to hospital in serious condition. He said stabbings are far too common in the area.
“I’ve found a lot of information on my laptop, on the internet, on the news about a lot of stabbings going on,” said Martins.
But Superintendent Devon Clunis of the Winnipeg Police Service said just because Winnipeggers are hearing more about stabbings, does not mean they are happening more often.
“Winnipeg experienced a reduction in its crime trend from 2009 to 2011,” said Clunis.
“Sometimes you may hear something -- and you hear it a number of times – and all of a sudden people think there is a lot of it going on. That’s not necessarily always the true fact.”
Clunis also said it would take months to compile the types of numbers Smith wants, and that they may not prove to be of any value.
Police said they will review the recommendation made by Smith but aren’t promising to follow through on it.