Comparing Recent Crime Stats in Hill East (PSA 108 Meets Tonight)
MPD Crime Maps and Statistics Paint a Very Fuzzy Picture
by Larry Janezich
A comparison of violent and property crime for the past 30 days with the previous 30 days in PSA 108 shows that the numbers of violent crime has increased slightly, while the number of property crimes dropped significantly.*
The violent crimes fell into two categories – robberies and assault; robberies (with and without a gun) were the most frequent offense. Three instances of violent crime occurred in the 1500 block of East Capitol in the last 30 days, but it is unclear from the crime maps which crime had been committed.
The property crimes fell into four categories – burglary, theft, theft from auto, and stolen auto, with theft being the most common. The significant drop in property crime came in the category of theft. It’s possible the drop is connected to the new records management system – in any event, what the drop actually means is difficult to determine, given the broad definition of what constitutes “theft” (see MPD crime definitions below).
While the MPD crime maps and accompanying explanatory text can paint a broad picture of the general nature of crime and where it occurred, a look at the MPD definitions of crime** from the same website shows how difficult it is to determine exactly what happened and where. In addition, the default comparison of crime data on the crime maps is the previous 30 days compared with the same period for a year ago. While this information is interesting, of much more import to residents is crime data for the past 30 days compared with crime data from the previous 30 days – and even the previous 30 days before that – to get a snapshot of how crime is trending over the past 60 to 90 days.
PSA 108 meets Thursday night at 7:00pm at Liberty Baptist Church, 527 Kentucky Avenue, SE. More information on the details of what happened and where should be available there. The MPD Crime Map can be found here: http://crimemap.dc.gov/
*On Sunday, August 23rd, the MPDC implemented a new records management system called Cobalt. The offense categories presented within this application have remained the same; however, all statistics are subject to change due to a variety of reasons, such as changes in classification, the determination that certain offense reports were unfounded, or late reporting.
** MPD Crime Offense Definitions
Abbreviated definitions of DC Index Offenses per DC Official Code Statutes, Title 22: Criminal Offenses and Penalties (Please note these will not match the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) definitions; these are specific to District of Columbia Criminal Statutes)
Homicide: Killing of another purposely, or otherwise, with malice aforethought.
Sex Abuse: Engaging in or causing another person to submit to a sexual act by force, threat or reasonable fear, involuntary impairment of the personâ€™s ability to appraise or control his or her conduct, rendering that other person unconscious or under conditions wherein a reasonable person would not believe that consent was freely and knowingly given. The most serious sex abuse categories are included in the reports of DC Code Index Violent Crimes: Sexual Assault and on the Crime Mapping Application. The figures reported in this category include First Degree Sex Abuse, Second Degree Sex Abuse, Attempted First Degree Sex Abuse and Assault with Intent to Commit First Degree Sex Abuse against adults. Data in this format is available online from 2011.
Robbery: The taking of anything of value from another person by force, violence or fear.
Assault Dangerous Weapon (ADW)/Aggravated Assault: Knowingly or purposely causing serious bodily injury, threatening to do so, or knowingly engaging in conduct that creates a grave risk of serious bodily injury to another person.
Arson: The malicious burning, or attempt to burn, any structure, vessel, vehicle, railroad car or property of another.
Burglary: The unlawful entry of a structure, vessel, watercraft, railroad car or yard where chattels are deposited with the intent to commit any criminal offense
Burglary-1: Burglary of a dwelling or other building that is occupied at the time of the event.
Burglary-1 Armed: Committing the act of burglary by use of, or threat of, any dangerous or deadly weapon.
Burglary-2: Burglary of a dwelling or other building that is not occupied at the time of the event.
Motor Vehicle Theft: The theft of any self-propelled, motor driven vehicle that is primarily intended to transport persons and property on a highway.
Theft: Wrongfully obtaining or using the property of another with the intent to deprive the owner of the value thereof.
Theft-1: Theft of another’s property valued at $1000 or more.
Theft-2 Armed: Theft of another’s property valued at less than $1000.
Theft F/Auto: of items from within a vehicle, excluding motor vehicle parts and accessories.
Theft/Other: A broad inclusion of Theft offenses including embezzlement, theft of services and fraud/false pretenses. The Theft/Other category excludes theft of items from a motor vehicle or the motor vehicle itself.
Robbery – Pickpocket: A Robbery committed by the sudden and stealthy seizure of a wallet or other item from the body of a person. Since no overt force is used this offense will be classified as a theft.
Robbery – Snatch: A Robbery committed by the sudden and stealthy seizure of a purse, wallet or other item from another person’s possession, in his/her presence and without the use of overt force. Since no force is used this offense will be classified as a theft.