LAPD statistics show increase in violent crimes and robberies compared to last year

City News Service
Thursday, March 28, 2024
LAPD stats show increase in violent crimes, robberies
Violent crime in Los Angeles is up 2.9% compared to March 2023, and robberies have increased by 9.5%, law enforcement officials said.

LOS ANGELES (CNS) -- Violent crime in Los Angeles is up 2.9% compared to March 2023, and robberies have increased by 9.5%, law enforcement officials said Tuesday.

During Tuesday's Board of Police Commissioners meeting, Interim Los Angeles Police Chief Dominic Choi reported an uptick in violent crimes, with 73 homicides so far this year compared to 57 at this point in 2023, an increase of 28.1%.

Choi said robberies continue to "plague us as a crime problem."

He also emphasized that property crime is down 4.6% compared to the same time last year, and said Los Angeles continues to see about a 3.1% decline in Part 1 or major crimes.

While overall violent crime and robberies have risen so far this year, Choi reassured commissioners that homicides are down 6.4% and victims who are shot are also down by 3.4% compared to 2022.

Choi said robberies with firearms are up 2.9%, gang-related robberies are up 5.3% and motor vehicle theft is up 6% compared to 2023. Kias, Chevrolets and Hyundais are still the "most stolen" vehicles, and the city has seen a 4.6% increase in E-bikes and scooters being stolen, he added.

Though there's an increase in robberies this year, Choi noted that gang-related robberies are down 25.5% and robberies with firearms are down 35% compared to 2022.

The City Council voted to advance reform options for police accountability, in what council members hope will be a major step in the latest effort to improve the Los Angeles Police Department's discipline practices.

Burglaries are up 1%, according to the interim chief, who added that commercial burglaries are down 6.1%. However, he warned of an increase in residential burglaries being reported, which are up 4.5%.

Choi underscored that the crime statistics this week did not include information from the LAPD's Central Bureau, which may produce some discrepancies.

Board Vice President Rasha Gerges Shields said the statistics could impact how safe people feel, and asked Choi what steps the department has taken or will take to address those concerns.

Choi said the LAPD has "specific strategies" to address these crimes and trends "at the area level, at the bureau level and even at the department-wide level."

He drew on the Organized Retail Crime Task Force as an example, and mentioned how the department recently created the South American Theft Group Task Force to address burglaries of residential homes.

"We've done a deeper dive to see where these are occurring, what time and focusing our resources at those types of places," Choi said.

He added that community programs such as Coffee With A Cop can help make residents feel more safe.

"What I've learned and what I've seen is when the community member has a direct link to an officer, whether it's the captain or their senior lead officer or patrol officers, that sense of safety goes up because they have somebody to lean on," Choi said.

As part of his weekly update, Choi noted that the department has 8,866 sworn officers, and civilian personnel staffing is at 2,627. Reserve officers remain at 443.