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Stats show decline in crime

Video cameras seen as deterrent

In almost all categories, crime in Wasco went down over the past year, according to statistics provided by the Kern County Sheriff’s Department.

At the Jan. 7 City Council meeting, two residents had addressed the council with concerns that crime rates had been rising in the city.

A review of reported crimes from the Kern County Sheriff’s Office comparing crimes in 2018 against those of 2019 showed the downward trend.

Statistics were provided by KCSO Administrative Coordination Clerk Sarah Kimble, who works in the Crime Analysis Unit.

Homicides dropped from 5 in 2018 to 3 in 2019 and instances of rape also dropped from 11 in 2018 to 5 in 2019. Robberies remained the same for both years, at 20 robberies per year.

There were 50 aggravated assaults in 2018, which dropped to 31 in 2019, for a decrease of 19 assaults.

The next category is crimes against property, with a reported 128 burglaries in 2018, compared to 105 in 2019.

Larceny dropped from 166 in 2018 to 137 in 2019.

Vehicle burglaries also decreased, from 75 in 2018 to 46 in 2019. In addition, there was one reported case of arson in 2018 and none reported in 2019.

The statistics show an overall decrease in crime of 132 instances.

The Sheriff’s Department attributes at least part of the success to its ability to utilize video cameras attached to homes and businesses for surveillance. Wasco substation Sergeant Peter Martinez has asked all homeowners to register their home surveillance cameras with the substation so they can assist deputies in the event of a crime.

“We are increasing patrols and patrol activity,” Sergeant Peter Martinez said. “Visible law enforcement is a proven crime deterrent.”

Martinez said he will have additional information at the next council meeting on Feb. 4.


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