Targeted enforcement is credited for a drop in property crimes on the West Shore.

Property crimes are down on the West Shore

Mental Health Act files up for West Shore RCMP and across the region

Some West Shore residents may be sleeping a little easier lately.

The West Shore RCMP’s first quarter mayor’s report has been released, and while cases involving the Mental Health Act are up, incidents of breaking and entering have dropped.

“Our property crimes are down,” said Insp. Larry Chomyn, West Shore RCMP Officer in Charge. “That’s has been a bit of our focus.”

He credited that reduction to targeted enforcement and the work of the detachment’s crime reduction unit.

Some of the focus has also involved following up with individuals that have conditions imposed on them by the courts, such as a curfew. “Then they know the police are checking on them,” he said.

While those individuals might be more inclined to commit crimes during a particular time – usually nighttime – Chomyn noted having officers doing regular checks acts as a great deterrent.

Commercial B&Es fell to 21 from 33 during the first quarter of 2016, while the 54 residential break-ins were down from 83.

While there were three more thefts from motor vehicles, vehicle thefts fell dramatically from 58 to 25. But as Chomyn noted, prolific offenders can often skew those numbers, as one or two individuals can account for a string of thefts.

Two areas that have seen increases are fraud, with 102 counts (up from 70), and Mental Health Act-related files with 176 (up from 140).

Chomyn credits some of the increase in fraud cases to technology. Tap features on credit cards, for example, make it easier for an individual to pay with a stolen card. “It’s a trend across the board,” he said.

As for an increase in police-involved mental health incidents, he said “that’s not isolated to the West Shore … Overall, I think it’s a sign of the times and social pressures on our communities.”

Often, he said, departments see an increase when individuals aren’t getting their usual supports and services, whether that’s at home or from an outside agency. “Our goal is to get them the proper supports and help,” he said, noting they work within the entire south Island region to connect people with those services. Chomyn also noted that “generally, we see a lot of people gravitate to our area,” due to factors such climate.

Langford accounted for the majority of files, with roughly 55 per cent, followed by Colwood with almost 19 per cent, View Royal with 15 per cent, Metchosin with four per cent and Highlands with just under two per cent, a trend that matches their rank in population. First Nations within the West Shore RCMP’s jurisdiction accounted for roughly four per cent of all calls.

katie@goldstreamgazette.com

Just Posted

Oak Bay father charged with double murder takes the stand

Andrew Berry pleaded not guilty to the December 2017 deaths of his two daughters

PHOTOS: Check out the bells and whistles added to Westhills Stadium

Rick Stiebel/News Staff Clusters of tradespeople buzzing around busy with last-minute preparations… Continue reading

Victoria contractors file civil claims for work on Sooke Tim Hortons, Petro Canada

Contractors file civil suits against Petromaxx, T’Sou-ke First Nation

Both suspects arrested from Oak Bay armed robbery

Perpetrators allegedly used a firearm to rob Oak Bay Avenue resident

Saanich councillor slams McKenzie Interchange Project

Coun. Judy Brownoff said the project will only create more greenhouses gases and traffic

VIDEO: Title of 25th Bond movie is ‘No Time to Die’

The film is set to be released in April 2020

POLL: Should there be a ban on gas-powered leaf blowers?

We’ve all heard them, and most likely cursed them under our breath.… Continue reading

Greater Victoria wanted list for the week of Aug. 23

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

‘Unsubstantiated’ bomb threat against CP Rail in Revelstoke

On Aug. 18, a bomb threat was made against CP Rail in Revelstoke

Coroner’s inquest into fatal police shooting in Port Hardy begins in Campbell River

James Reginald Butters, 24, killed in 2015 after RCMP responded to call of male uttering threats

New ‘Matrix’ film set with Keanu Reeves and Lana Wachowski

Fourth installment to feature Reeves as Neo and Carrie-Anne Moss as Trinity

Catholic church buys $7.5M equestrian facility in B.C., plans ‘agri-retreat’ centre

Church hopes to grow crops, host students and others on Bradner property

New regulations require training for B.C. addiction recovery homes

Inspections, standards replace ‘wild west,’ Judy Darcy says

Trans Mountain gives contractors 30 days to get workers, supplies ready for pipeline

Crown corporation believes the expansion project could be in service by mid-2022

Most Read