San Diego Crime Reports Up 7 Percent After 30 Years of Decline; Realignment Cited


The decades-long trend of declining crime across San Diego County took a turn last year, when reported incidents increased by 7 percent, reports the San Diego Union-Tribune. “Nobody in law enforcement likes it when the crime rate goes up,” said Sheriff Bill Gore, adding that it is cause for concern. “Crime rates have been going down for 30 years. We didn't think crime would go to zero.” Some are ready to place at least some of the blame on the state's public safety realignment law, which transferred thousands of prisoners from state institutions to county corrections programs. The counties are tasked with housing and supervising offenders convicted of nonviolent, nonserious crimes. Some say the result is a strain on local law enforcement officials' ability to keep an eye on the offenders once they get out of jail or prison. San Diego police Chief Bill Lansdowne, noting that the city had its lowest crime rate in 42 years in 2011, believes realignment “is starting to have an effect on our crime.” He said lower numbers of police officers, because of budget cuts, were also a likely factor.

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