As Oakland residents grow more and more frustrated with the inept management of this town and fear more and more for their safety as they wake up every morning to headlines about shootouts and restaurant robberies and little kids being hit by stray bullets and the Mayor being desperate enough to ask for the help of the guardian angels, our leaders, thankfully, are stepping up to the plate and offering reassurances. The Mayor, at last night’s Silence the Violence Day at the Coliseum, said not to worry, things just aren’t that bad:
Mayor Ron Dellums said Wednesday there’s a perception that crime is on the rise in his city, but it’s not the reality.
The attitude is hardly limited to the Mayor’s office. Jean Quan staffer Sue Piper, in response to a post about local crime statistics, informed readers of one local listserv:
A word of caution about the crime stats– one needs too look a little deeper. One reason the crime stats are high is a significant increase in the reporting of domestic crime. The City has made a concerted effort to provide support systems and coordination to encourage victims of domestic crime– especially sexually exploited minors– to report to the police. And if you compare this past year to previous years, you will see that homicides are actually less.
On the other hand, burglaries, especially auto burglaries, are up.
So…which is it? Perception? Reality? Shall we take a look? Below, you’ll find year to date comparisons of reported Part 1 crimes in Oakland.
And by the way, if you, like Jean Quan, want to discount the reported domestic crimes from the numbers, since, as she’s constantly telling us, they’re being reported more, not actually happening more, feel free to subtract those figures from the aggravated assault totals. Year to date 2007, 317 of those 2184 aggravated assaults were domestic problems. This year, 326 out of 2455 were.