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Crime down 9% in Burbank

Josh Kleinbaum

Crime in Burbank fell 9% in the first six months of this year

compared to the same period last year, including significant drops in

robberies and motor-vehicle thefts, according to statistics released

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this week by the state attorney general’s office.

The statistics showed rises in just two of eight crime categories

tracked by the FBI.

“Crime is down overall because officers are being very proactive,”

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Burbank Police spokesman Sgt. Will Berry said. “They’re making a lot

of stops, they’re very visible, they’re making a lot of arrests and

word gets out. And the detectives are following up aggressively.”

Berry also attributed the drop in crime to increased use of cell

phones. With phones readily available, Berry said the department gets

more calls as crimes are happening, instead of 10 minutes after the

fact, which makes it easier for the officers to do their jobs.

“We have a lot more eyes and ears,” he said.

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Most of the calls the department gets on cell phones are about

road rage and reckless driving, but Berry said the department also

had a 10% increase in calls from cell phones about other crimes.

According to the bureau’s statistics -- which track homicides,

forcible rapes, robberies, aggravated assaults, burglaries, motor-

vehicle thefts, larceny thefts and arson -- total reported crimes in

Burbank from January to June dropped to 1,520 from 1,671 in the same

period of 2002.

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The biggest dips came in robberies, which dropped from 56 to 31,

and motor- vehicle theft, which dropped from 301 to 239.

For the second consecutive year, no homicides occurred in Burbank,

and seven forcible rapes were reported, the same as 2002.

The only significant increase came in aggravated assaults, which

rose from 83 to 95. Aggravated assaults include domestic violence.

Berry said that the department has not had time to analyze those

numbers.

“We’re not sure if [the aggravated-assault increase] is due to an

increase in domestic-violence reporting, or what,” he said. “We have

to check that out.”


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