From http://www.wcnc.com by Glen Counts, January 27, 2016
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police released their end of the year crime stats for 2015 on Wednesday morning.
It was a report card that was expected to be poor, showing a dramatic increase in violent crime.
“Unfortunately we didn’t get the impact on the overall crime rate we would have liked,” said Chief Kerr Putney.
Cheif Putney delivered the bad news and didn’t make any excuses.
Homicide was up 36%, robbery 22%, rape 11%, and overall violent crime increased 18%.
“It’s difficult, we get the environment, but I think Charlotte is better than that– we need to get our people who witness, who see some of these criminal activities to cooperate.”
Putney was not surprised by any of those numbers, but the one stat that caught his attention was a dramatic rise in home invasions.
There were 156 last year– an increase of 46%; police say 51% of those were drug related.
“It takes a brazen kind of person to go into a home that he suspects is occupied and be armed and encounter people with the intent of robbing them,” said Putney.
He hopes the increase does not overshadow the work officers are doing. He says they have been aggressive and cites the number of citizen contacts as proof. In 2012 there were 42,000, and by 2015 that number nearly doubled to 81,000.
“I want to talk about the work, because if you look at the numbers, I know a lot of people might think our officers have not been as proactive as they should be, I vehemently dispute that our officers have been as proactive as ever,” said Putney.
He has asked for more officers, and City Council members are considering that request. In the short term Putney says he intends to measure progress neighborhood by neighborhood.
“I am looking at how we spot reduce in areas that are hotspots, chronic hot spots, because I’m not just looking for crime fighters, I’m looking for people who solve problems.”