|(Jan. 10, 2019, 10:50 p.m.) -- At late afternoon Thursday (Jan. 10), the City of Long Beach issued a press release headlined "Crime Continues To Decrease In Long Beach." To view the release in full, click here.
LBREPORT.com's initial analysis follows below.
News stories are supposed to provide the "what" and the "where." So "what" crimes are listed and "where" in LB were they committed?
But they don't identify or similarly list Part 2 crimes (all other neighborhood-impacting crimes. Part 2 crimes include multiple categories of neighborhood impacting-crimes including non-aggravated assaults (no weapon, no serious/aggravated injury), forgery; buying/receiving/possessing stolen property, vandalism, weapons violations, prostitution; drug abuse violations; indecent exposure, statutory rape, DUI, liquor laws, disorderly conduct (incl. disturbing the peace), vagrancy and everything else except traffic violations.
LBPD crime stats don't detail Part 2 crimes. They omit specifying crimes impacting multiple neighborhoods, described by Councilmembers (including LBPD Public Safety Committee chair Suzie Price) in discussing vagrant/homeless related crimes.
For 2018, LBPD says Part 2 crimes as group dropped citywide from 17,236 to 16,427, a decrease citywide of 4.7% (visible at this link, p. 9.) But in its currently displayed form, one can't tell what Part 2 crimes may have increased while others decreased or where in LB those increases or decreases occurred.
Some Part 2 crimes vary considerably and include vagrant-related "quality of life" crimes (such as a mentally ill person urinating in public ) LBREPORT.com acknowledges that other police agencies routinely combine Part 2 crimes, but in our view, Long Beach shouldn't do so when the City Council has noted the neighborhood impacts of homeless/vagrant related "quality of life" crimes.
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Pages 1-9 of at this link show the number of Part 2 crimes as a group reported in neighborhood-size crime reporting districts, but because they're not identified by the type of crime, one can't tell what types of crime(s) were committed.
Beginning early in 2018, the Police Department initiated a review of all aggravated assault incidents to identify the cause of a notable increase in the number of aggravated assaults. During this review, the department was unable to immediately determine any unusual contributing factors. After adjustment of review parameters, which included analysis of actual report narratives, it was discovered that a significant number of incidents had been misclassified as aggravated assaults, instead of simple assaults. These misclassifications were a result of data entry coding errors when reports were being electronically filed, and when reviewed for categorization...With this review, we anticipate seeing a decrease in aggravated assaults and an increase in simple assaults in the 2018 year-end crime statistics...
(LBREPORT.com is in the process pursuing this aspect of LB's 2018 crime stats separately.)
LBPD displays Part 1 crimes by its 5 divisions (North, South, East & West + Port). It shows Part 1 crimes "citywide" (all five divisions combined) and for each of the five LBPD divisions separately at this link.
Although the City of Long Beach says it practices an "open data" policy and Mayor Garcia says he's "data driven," LBPD provides its crime statistics in a user-unfriendly digital format although we believe they could be made available in a user-friendly spread sheet format (which we presume LBPD uses internally.)
That's our initial review. Further from LBREPORT.com on LB's 2018 crime stats to follow.
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