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Overall Crime Declines by 1.3% in City of San Diego

Follows Mayor Faulconer’s Efforts to Rebuild the San Diego Police Department with More Competitive Compensation & an Aggressive Campaign to Attract New Recruits

San Diego – Following significant investments to rebuild the San Diego Police Department (SDPD) over the past few years, Mayor Kevin L. Faulconer and Police Chief David Nisleit announced Friday that overall crime declined by 1.3 percent citywide last year.

The announcement serves as a preview of the “Crime in the San Diego region” annual report, which is expected to be released by the San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG) in the next few weeks.

“Public safety has always been a top priority and the investments we’ve made to rebuild our San Diego Police Department are making a difference as we continue to experience historically low levels of crime,” said Mayor Kevin Faulconer. “This is a direct result of the hard work and dedication of our police officers to protect our community and keep San Diego one of the safest big cities in the country. We can’t them enough, especially during times like these when we are relying on public safety heroes more than ever.”

Mayor Faulconer has made rebuilding the San Diego Police Department a top priority. Three years ago, the Mayor reached a landmark contract agreement with the San Diego Police Officers Association to make compensation significantly more competitive among California law enforcement agencies, allowing the City to better recruit and retain police officers.

“San Diego continues to rank near the very top when it comes to safety,” Chief Nisleit said. “Our officers are working hard to continue keeping all San Diego neighborhoods safe. I am proud of the work the department is doing and we’ll continue to improve moving forward.”

In 2018, the City also rolled out a digital marketing campaign focused on increasing the recruitment of qualified candidates to SDPD. This led to some of the largest classes at police academies in several years.

SANDAG compiles and analyzes regional crime data using FBI index crime information provided by local law enforcement agencies, as well as crime data obtained from the Automated Regional Justice Information System. The FBI index includes four violent offenses (willful homicide, forcible rape, robbery and aggravated assault) and three types of property crime (burglary, larceny-theft, and motor vehicle theft).

“The landmark agreement gave SDPD the necessary resources to rebuild itself into a robust organization that can meet the demands of a growing population and continue focusing on its number one priority: keeping all San Diegans safe,” said Jack Schaeffer, President of the San Diego Police Officers Association. “This report showcasing a decline in overall crime reinforces what we already knew: these investments continue to bring a tremendous return to the benefit of all San Diegans.”

Overall crime in 2019 for the City of San Diego decreased by 1.3% compared to 2018.  San Diego continues to be one of the safest big cities in the United States with the lowest violent crime rate per 1,000 residents compared to the 10 largest U.S. cities.

The violent crime rate in 2019 is comparable to rates the City of San Diego experienced in the 1970s.

  • Approximately four people out of 1,000 were the victim of a violent crime.
  • Murders increased from 35 in 2018 to 50 in 2019 and is the only category to see an increase.
    • 12 of the murders were associated with gang activity.
    • 18 were associated with family/domestic violence, with two tragic incidents accounting for eight of the victims.
    • Rape, robbery and aggravated assaults all saw significant decreases.

The property crime rate in 2019 is comparable to rates the City of San Diego experienced in the late 1950s.

  • Approximately 19 people out of 1,000 were the victim of a property crime.
  • All three property crime categories saw a decrease in 2019.

The chart below depicts all Part I crimes compiled as part of the Department of Justice Uniform Crime Reporting program.

In 2019, the SDPD answered over 1.2 million calls.  All department employees are committed to maintaining public safety by providing the highest quality of police services. This is achieved by strengthening community partnerships and immediately addressing crime and quality-of-life issues. 

For updates on City of San Diego services, programs, links to helpful information related to preventing fraud and abuse, please visit sandiego.gov/coronavirus

For information regarding COVID-19 cases and directives from County of San Diego public health officials, please visit coronavirus-sd.com. Text “COSD COVID19” to 468-311 for text alert updates.

A statewide “Stay-at-Home” order is still in effect. For more information on the order, including what’s closed, what’s open and which industries are exempted by the state, please visit COVID19.ca.gov.

 

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