Serious crime in Elgin is the lowest it’s been in nearly 40 years.
Part I crime statistics for 2010 illustrate a 2.14% decrease over 2009. Part I crimes are considered serious crimes that include homicides, robbery, battery and assault.
In 2010, 2,556 serious crimes were reported. Not since 1971 has Elgin reported such low crime numbers.
“The Elgin Police Department is committed to making the Elgin community safer every year and has worked very hard to apply community-policing strategies that have worked,” said Elgin Police Chief Jeff Swoboda. “But EPD’s success should not be solely defined by these numbers.”
Swoboda said that statistics provide constructive information to enable the department to better respond to crime.
“Statistics are a tool we use to spot trends and make judgment calls about how to approach crime within the city,” said Swoboda. “Conversely statistics also demonstrate where policing strategies aren’t working and may illustrate that we need to tighten up enforcement in some areas.”
Either way, Swoboda doesn’t want his department’s efforts to get lost in the statistics.
“The department works hard to execute community-policing tactics to keep Elgin safe,” said Swoboda. “And those tactics are working. In 1971, Elgin’s population was roughly 55,000. While Elgin has doubled in size in 40 years, crime is actually lower.”
Part II crime is also down by nearly 2.6%. Part II crime is considered less serious and includes disorderly conduct, motor vehicle offenses and drug-related crimes.
Swoboda said that he will continue to work to build community partnerships to reduce crime.
“The community’s involvement is the key to helping lessen crime,” said Swoboda. “If a resident sees suspicious activity and reports it, we’re able to respond. We encourage all our residents to become involved to ensure Elgin remains safe.”