Palmdale, Lancaster record lowest crime rates in 20 years

PALMDALE/LANCASTER – Crime rates in Palmdale and Lancaster for 2011 have dropped to their lowest levels in at least 20 years, according to press releases issued by the cities of Palmdale and Lancaster Thursday.

Palmdale’s crime rate plummets for 2011

With a 2.71 percent decrease in the number of Part I crimes reported and a 3.61 percent drop in the crime rate (crime’s per 10,000 residents) in 2011, Palmdale’s overall crime rate has plummeted to 266.91 crimes per 10,000 population.

This marks the third consecutive year that Palmdale’s crime rate has been below 300 crimes per 10,000, a number that puts Palmdale in a category of having a reputation as a safe city.  In 2007, the City of Palmdale set a five-year goal of bringing the crime rate below 300 by 2012.  That goal was reached two years ahead of schedule.

“We’re seeing a crime rate that hasn’t been this low in decades,” said Palmdale’s Director of Public Safety and Community Relations Anne Ambrose. “It’s certainly a great way to celebrate our 50th year as an incorporated City.”

Crime was down in nearly every category. For the year, there was a 17.14 percent reduction in arson, a 24.95 percent reduction in grand theft auto, a 7.32 percent reduction in rapes, a 4.98 percent reduction in robberies and a 2.30 percent reduction in assaults. Burglaries showed only a slight (.73 percent) increase over the previous year.

Homicides increased from 8 in 2010 to 9 in 2011 and there was .85 percent increase in larceny/thefts.

“The continuing low crime rate represents a lot of hard work by Sheriff’s deputies, city staff and the residents of Palmdale,” said Palmdale Sheriff’s Acting Captain Don Ford.  I am very proud of what our community has accomplished in very difficult times by pulling together to make Palmdale a great place to live and work.”

With a strong partnership between our dedicated Sheriff’s Department, a professional City staff, and community engagement through programs such as Neighborhood and Business Watch, we continue to see a downward trend in crime in Palmdale,” said Palmdale Mayor Jim Ledford.

“Unfortunately, recent actions by the State to release prisoners on an early parole program are putting all California cities in jeopardy of seeing an increase in crime,” Ledford continued. “We as a community are going to have to increase our involvement, participation and efforts in programs such as Neighborhood and Business Watch to help offset this.”

View 2011 vs. 2010 Part I Crimes per 10,000 in the Palmdale Crime rate chart here.

Lancaster’s crime rate plummets for 2011

According to final statistics from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (LASD), Part I crimes per 10,000 residents in Lancaster for 2011 fell to 260, from 298.7 in 2010. This represents a 13.0% decline in the City’s crime rate for 2011.

This is well below the crime rate goal of 300 established by Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca along with Lancaster Mayor R. Rex Parris and the Lancaster City Council. Further, the current crime rate of 260 represents a reduction of more than 42% in just four years, from a crime rate of 449.4 in 2007.

“The main reason we have seen a sustained reduction in crime since 2007 is the commitment of all segments of the City, most notably the Neighborhood Watch and Business Watch groups that work daily to keep our City safe,” said Lancaster Mayor R. Rex Parris.

There were 2,361 fewer serious crimes in Lancaster in 2011 than in 2007 (4,102 vs. 6,463), despite an increase in population of nearly 14,000 (157,795 vs. 143,818). This equates to 6.47 fewer serious crimes every day and 45.4 fewer serious crimes each week in 2011.

Since 2007, Lancaster has experienced double-digit reductions in every one of the eight Part I crime categories reported by the Sheriff’s Department. Of note is the drop in burglaries and auto thefts from 2007 to 2011, with burglaries in Lancaster reduced by 39% and auto thefts reduced by 54%.

Lancaster experienced only three homicides for 2011, compared to eight in 2010. None of the three homicides was gang or firearm related.

“Our deputies have done a great job in reducing crime, with 12,955 arrests and no gang-related homicides in 2011,” said Lancaster Sheriff’s Captain Robert Jonsen.

“Our entire City staff focuses their energies daily on public safety,” said Lancaster City Manager Mark V. Bozigian. “These efforts are not just confined to crime reduction, however. Of equal importance is keeping our streets safe to drive for residents and visitors. We have made great strides since 2007 and continue to pursue new initiatives to improve traffic safety.”

View 2011 vs. 2010 Part I Crimes per 10,000 in the Lancaster crime rate chart here.

Information via released from the cities of Lancaster and Palmdale.)

  6 comments for “Palmdale, Lancaster record lowest crime rates in 20 years

    February 5, 2012 at 7:45 am

    yeah civilian crime is down because the sheriffs are killing or beating everyone and then they ask question wow we praise their good job! yeah rite

    • Facts
      February 5, 2012 at 8:01 am

      Well Marrie, based on your logic, the Sheriffs must be dealing witht he right criminals if their efforts are resulting in dropping crime rates. I’ll praise that!

    • Facts
      February 5, 2012 at 8:01 am

      Well Marrie, based on your logic, the Sheriffs must be dealing with the right criminals if their efforts are resulting in dropping crime rates. I’ll praise that!

  2. Mark W
    February 4, 2012 at 9:14 pm

    What on earth are city council candidates going to run on now? “Law and order” is a basic (often singular) staple of running for local political office.

    And Lancaster’s somebody’s-pocket-lining “Eye in the Sky” project suddenly seems so less a priority for sparse city funds.

  3. Stinger
    February 3, 2012 at 4:37 pm

    Okay… Before we get into the politics of it all, let me state the following: Kudos to the Sheriff’s Deputies and both cities for working on getting crime rates down. Good job!

    • Marsha
      February 4, 2012 at 2:24 pm

      According to Mayor Parris is all about the birds, bird music that is, in the Wall Street Jurnal there is an articule quoting Mayor Parris on how he was able to get crime down in the city with bird music, I am not making this up.

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