2012 violent, property crime stats released

Published 2:12 pm Friday, August 2, 2013

The Alabama Criminal Justice Information Center released a report Wednesday of the state’s reported crime statistics for 2012.

The “Crime in Alabama 2012” report details crime statistics in the state for 2012, and breaks down the crimes into county-by-county statistics, as well as municipal statistics.

The total in Marengo County for Part I crime, which includes violent and property crimes, was 609 reported crimes.

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Included in the 609 reported crimes were three reports of homicide, eight reports of rape, 10 reports of robbery, 70 reports of assault, 146 reports of burglary, 351 reports of larceny and 21 reports of motor vehicle theft.

These numbers reflect reports from the Marengo County Sheriff’s Department, the Demopolis Police Department, the Linden Police Department and the Thomaston Police Department.

The Marengo County Sheriff’s Department reported three cases of homicide, whereas there were none reported from the department in 2011. There were two fewer cases of rape reported in 2012 with two, down from four in 2011.

The number of robbery cases reported remained unchanged, with just one reported. There were 37 reports of assault, 81 reports of burglary, 76 reports of larceny and 13 reports of motor vehicle theft.

Assault reports from the department were up from 18 the previous year, burglary reports were up from 68, larceny reports were down from 103, and motor vehicle theft reports were up from nine.

“I think drugs and alcohol have a lot to do with some of the numbers being up,” Marengo County Sheriff Richard Bates said. “If people are out drinking with associates, or their spouse or whatever, unfortunately things happen that raises the assault numbers.”

The Demopolis Police Department reported zero homicides, five rapes and eight robberies, all unchanged from 2011.

There were 25 assaults in Demopolis, down from 38 in 2011; 54 burglaries, down from 68; 253 reports of larceny, down from 284; and seven motor vehicle thefts, down from 13.

DPD Chief Tommie Reese said the crime numbers have been trending down since he became chief in 2009.

“Our numbers have been lower each year since I became chief,” he said. “I think more people are wanting to do the right thing, and our officers have also been more visible.”

He added that he feels like the 2013 numbers will be lower than the 2012 numbers.

“I feel like it will be lower than last year,” he said, “but that can change in an instant.”

The Linden Police Department reported zero homicides, rapes and robberies, which are all unchanged from 2011. There were five reports of assault, up from two in 2011; seven burglaries, down from 37; 19 reports of larceny, down from 45; and zero motor vehicle thefts, down from two.

The Thomaston Police Department reported zero homicides, the same as in 2011; one rape, up from zero the previous year; one robbery, up from zero; three assaults, up from one; four burglaries, up from zero; three reports of larceny, up from one; and one motor vehicle theft, up from zero.

The report also detailed clearance rates for each of the departments. A clearance is a measure of law enforcement activity that shows that a crime has been solved either by arrested or by exceptional means.

The Marengo County Sheriff’s Department had a 100 percent clearance rate on homicides, zero percent on rape, zero percent on robbery, 27 percent on assault, five percent on burglary, three percent on larceny and eight percent on motor vehicle theft.

“The investigators have to finish one case before they can start another,” Bates said. “The best way to bring the clearance numbers up would be to put more manpower on the streets and try to prevent things from happening.”

The Demopolis Police Department had a zero percent clearance on rape, 75 percent on robbery, 24 percent on assault, six percent on burglary, 16 percent on larceny and 29 percent on motor vehicle theft.

“With thefts, a lot of times people don’t have serial numbers recorded, or they don’t have pictures of their jewelry,” Reese said.

The Linden Police Department had a 40 percent clearance rate on assault, 14 percent on burglary and five percent on larceny.

The Thomaston Police Department had a zero percent clearance on rape, 100 percent on robbery, 100 percent on assault, 25 percent on burglary, 67 percent on larceny and zero percent on motor vehicle theft.

The final part of the report detailed domestic violence cases. For purposes of this report, domestic violence is indicated when the relationship of the victim and offender is husband, wife, common-law spouse, ex-husband, ex-wife, girlfriend, boyfriend, ex-girlfriend or ex-boyfriend.

Marengo County had two reports of domestic violence homicide, one report of domestic violence rape, zero reports of domestic violence robbery, 13 reports of domestic violence aggravated assault and 95 cases of domestic violence simple assault.

“Demopolis has fared well crime-wise,” Reese said. “The trend is that it has decreased. We want to encourage the public to continue doing what they’re doing and keep Demopolis a good place to live and raise a family.”