"If you look at violent crime as a portion of serious crime we've seen nearly a 40 percent reduction" Chico Police Chief Maloney said. A six month crime report is in for the City of Chico. While the numbers look promising, showing nearly a 40% drop in crime rates in comparison to this time last year, there are other factors that must be considered. It is projected that by the end of 2010 officers will have responded to nearly 140,000 calls which is a new all time high.
"We have seen record high calls for service for the police department and that causes us to ask a question" Maloney said. That question is, why are the numbers showing fewer crime rates. Chief Maloney says this could be due to the fact that many crimes are never reported. In addition the police department is working with fewer officers, who are unable to respond to all calls and log all reports. Also, Chico's population has never been as large with such a low police presence. "The result is that service to our citizens is being affected" Maloney said.
Chico robberies are also on the rise. The city has seen six bank robberies so far this year, double the amount seen in the last two years. Chief Maloney does not attribute this to a low police force, but believes the bad economy is playing a part. "As these trends that we've described continue, the police simply are not going to be able to do it by ourselves" Maloney said. He also asks the community to stay vigilant in reporting crimes and hopes citizens will continue aiding officers in keeping Chico's streets safe.