Crime drops by 27 percent in Second District over 30 day period

Overall crime in the Second District, including Foggy Bottom, has decreased by 27 percent in the past 30 day period compared to last year, a Metropolitan Police Department official said at the Citizens Advisory Council on Wednesday.

Melvin Gresham, the commander of the Second District at MPD, said violent crime has decreased by 26 percent, and property crime has decreased by 27 percent compared to the same 30 day period last year. The decreases reflect the dropping numbers of overall crime in the Second District since the beginning of 2017, he said.

But not all crimes have declined. Motor vehicle thefts have doubled the past month compared to last year. Since the year began, police have documented 15 more motor vehicle thefts than last year.

Officials said that there is an increase in stolen automobiles partially because criminals are “getting good with key fobs” or devices that let car owners enter their cars without a key.

“Motor vehicle theft has been one of the biggest issues we had,” Gresham said.

Although property crime has reduced from last year, the burglary crime rate has increased by 10 percent in this year’s 30 day period, he said.

Sergeant Benjamin Firehock from the Second District said more burglaries tend to occur when people go on vacation from campuses, residential and commercial properties.

Even though there has been a recent decrease in crime in the Second District, Firehock said residents should stay cautious and remain aware of their safety on the streets.

“It is really important to just be really aware of your surroundings when you’re walking around the city,” Firehock said. “I know we like to think we are fairly safe in this area, but criminals understand that and that is why they come around here.”

Gresham and other officials said at the meeting that they wanted to make sure residents feel more comfortable reporting crimes, especially undocumented citizens.

“Our focus is totally crime driven and for the protection of crime,” Gresham said. “People need to call whenever they have issues, particularly if they are victims of a crime.”

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