Alexandria Police Department Provides Summary of Part I Crimes For 2020
For Immediate Release: April 13, 2021
The Alexandria Police Department has submitted its annual report of Part I crimes to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) as the City is required. The FBI divides offenses into Part I and Part II crimes. Part I crimes are considered more serious because they include crimes against people and personal property (homicide, rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, larceny, and auto theft). It is important to note that Alexandria generally has a low crime rate and a low number of criminal incidents. As such, small fluctuations in incidents when comparing annual data can lead to large percentage changes that must be considered in context.
The Police Department reports that Part I crimes climbed 19.14 percent in 2020 compared to 2019, mainly due to increases in stolen vehicles and larcenies. Stolen vehicles and larceny crimes are not generally considered violent crimes, although they can be traumatic for the victims. Violent Part I crimes include the homicide, rape, robbery, and aggravated assault categories. In 2020, Violent Part I crimes represent 9.48% of the City’s overall Part I crime, which is an increase of 3.33% from Violent Part I crimes in 2019.
City of Alexandria Part 1 Crimes
2019 vs 2020
The increase in stolen vehicles and larcenies from vehicles can be attributed to owners leaving them unattended for extended periods of time during the Covid-19 pandemic. Most thefts typically occurred from unlocked vehicles. Very few thefts involved the use of force, such as windows broken, vehicle trunks forced open, etc.
“There are simple steps vehicle owners can take to reduce their risk of becoming victims. Check on your vehicle daily, make sure the doors are locked and there are no valuables inside,” said Chief Michael Brown. “You should also move the vehicle periodically to reduce the appearance it is not being used.”
The Covid-19 pandemic also had an impact on burglaries in 2020. Residential burglaries were down drastically, likely because people spent more time at home. Commercial burglaries jumped nearly 50 percent, from 40 incidents in 2019 to 59 incidents in 2020, likely due to stores being temporarily closed or having limited hours. It should be noted the burglary rate in the City of Alexandria reached a five-year low in 2019.
There was a decrease in the number of reported rapes in 2020. The Police Department and the City’s Sexual Assault Center share concerns that some rapes, domestic violence, and crimes against children may not have been reported if the victims did not feel comfortable reaching out while having to stay in the home where the rapes occurred. APD wants to remind everyone that confidential support is available 24 hours a day by calling the City’s Sexual Assault Hotline at 703.683.7273 or by online chat with the National Sexual Assault Hotline. Anyone in immediate danger should call or text 911.
“2020 provided a unique set of challenges,” said Brown. “Our officers dedicated themselves to protecting the City and community members, while working through the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic, both at home and on the job, as well the fallout and questions brought on by the death of George Floyd. I couldn’t be prouder of them.”
For media inquiries only, contact Amanda Paga, Senior Public Information Officer, at email@example.com or 703.746.6600.
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