Police have their work cut out for them, but the town’s department is making slow headway to bring down the number of incidents in one of the region’s safest cities.
Although more crimes were committed in the last three months of 2014 compared to the third quarter of 2014, trends revealed that overall crime decreased 3 percent since 2013.
There were 1,044 crimes reported to Knightdale police in 2014, down from 1,075 the year before.
Overall, 318 crimes were reported during October, November and December, 2014, 51 more crimes than reported in the third quarter of the same year.
Most incidents occurred on Fridays and the most common reports consisted of larceny, drug possession, assault, vandalism and vehicle theft. In the fourth quarter, 61 shoplifting incidents, 26 drug offenses, 24 non-aggravated assaults and 22 vandalism incidents were among the most common crimes.
Notably, Knightdale police arrested fewer people for driving while impaired – decreasing incidents by 23 percent from the last three months of 2013. The quarterly report mentioned that four officers were out for extended periods due to family or medical leave, which could have led to fewer arrests.
In 2014, there were five more violent crimes, and drug crimes increased 13 percent compared to 2013. Police say this is due to their efforts in discovering possession, clearing 85 percent of drug-related cases that year through citations or arrest.
Burglaries decreased by 21 percent and larcenies decreased 17 percent last year.
While minor crimes were equitable to 2013 numbers, major violent crimes and property crimes fell by 77 incidents, or 15 percent in 2014, which the department noted as important.
Police chief Lawrence Capps emphasized the department’s specific focus on residential and commercial thefts and traffic, their most common problems.
“We are working very diligiently with folks in those businesses to drive those (larceny) numbers down,” he said.
“In our community, overall instances of crime are pretty low,” Capps said.
Knightdale police say that they will continue to press forward in pursuing quality of life and the number of crimes with a 2015 operational plan, but will likely not make significant rearrangements based on the final quarter’s report.