Trail RCMP have responded to 310 more calls this year compared to the same time period in 2015.
Sgt. Darren Oelke reported to city council this week and provided an update on the area’s crime statistics for the first nine months of the year – as of 5 p.m. Monday, calls totalled 4,933.
“One big thing we noticed at the office is that this summer didn’t slow down as it has in the past,” he began. “Things have kept going, normally we’ll see a bit of a lag through July and August, but we didn’t see that this year.”
The July gun heist at Trail Canadian Tire and hold up at the Fruitvale Liquor Store in September account for an increase of two under robbery stats. Other break and enters as well as motor vehicle thefts were up by 10 and 8 respectively.
By far the largest spike in the third quarter offences involved drugs – 47 investigations were carried out in those three months compared to 17 in 2015.
As Oelke pointed out, a statistical increase is not always a bad thing.
“The big difference was in drug investigations,” he said. “The detachment had a more proactive approach, these are one of the ones we can control, so when those numbers go up, we like to see that.”
Another category that is up overall this year, is mental health-related calls.
During the second and third quarters, police responded to 170 calls in 2016 compared to 132 last year.
Oelke pointed out that Trail RCMP have not historically kept track of mental health related calls, the data only dates back one year and provides only a snapshot, not a complete picture.
“Sometimes mental health calls are from the hospital, the Daly Pavilion could have an ‘elopee’ or something like that, which increases our mental health calls,” he explained. “They are definitely higher than what I would like to see, but we just started tracking these and do not have good statistics yet.”
Though motor vehicle incidents and impaired driving offences trended down, Oelke says one tragic collision has sparked a conversation between the RCMP and the province.
“There are meetings going on and we are working with the Ministry of Transportation and other parties to have a look at that intersection,” he said referring to Highway 3B near AM Ford Plus. “The ministry is doing a survey there as well to determine the sight lines … our suggestions are that they shut down the left turns in and out of there, and have everybody drive up to the light.”