Crime Up 22 Percent In Smithfield

Crime is up in the Town of Smithfield.

Statistics obtained by WTSB News shows that of the 26 different types of crime categories tracked by Smithfield Police, numbers were up in 19 of the 26 categories.

Comparing the first five months of this year – January 1st through May 31st – to the first five months of 2015, break-ins were up by 82 percent.  Of that number, commercial or business break-ins had increased 567 percent.

Violent assault numbers are 13 percent higher this year.  Robberies had increased by 20 percent and rapes had doubled from two to four.

Auto theft numbers are 83 percent higher, larcenies are up by 19 percent, and vandalism incidents have increased by 38 percent.

Drug crimes are up by 59 percent, weapons offenses are up by 18 percent, and there has been a 40 percent jump in stolen property reports during the first five months of this year.

Decreases were shown in liquor law violations, disorderly conduct, obscenity, and simple assaults.

During the first 5 months of 2015, there were 724 crimes reported in Smithfield. This year that number has increased to 886, which represents 22 percent more criminal activity.

Interim Smithfield Police Chief Keith Powell, who took over for former Chief Michael Scott on May 3rd, said Friday, “We have seen an increase, including an increase in burglaries. We are working to decrease those numbers.” Among the efforts to reduce the upswing in criminal activity is more high visibility patrols by officers. Detectives are also following up on leads in several of the unsolved criminal cases.

Statistics for June, 2016 have not yet been released.