Wednesday, November 04, 2015

STATS: Rape, Auto Theft, Aggravated Attacks Up (But Disturbing The Peace Is Down Sharply)

Criminal sexual assaults, aggravated assaults, and motor vehicle thefts have shown the greatest year-over-year increases in Lakeview as well as the 44th ward according to analysis of city crime data by CWB Chicago editors.

In fact, more criminal sexual assaults were reported here through October 15 than in any other year in the public database, which dates back to 2001. Criminal sexual assault is Illinois' legal term for rape.

Lakeview has seen 5% fewer police reports filed this year while the 44th ward has seen a 4% drop. The biggest contributors to the drop in both areas has been a reduction in burglaries.

If police report volume is to be believed, people aren't doing drugs as much anymore, either (ahem). Both the 44th ward and Lakeview as a whole have seen 25% reductions in dope cases.

Here's how reported crime in the 44th ward and the entirety of Lakeview stack up through October 15 of this year when compared to the same time period in 2014.

44th Ward

In the 44th ward, which covers nearly all of our hood plus nearby areas of Lakeview, there there were 140 fewer police reports taken this year than in 2015. A 4% drop.

Roughly half of the drop is due to a decline in the number of theft reports filed. Of course, these are statistics from a police department that sometimes refuses to record theft of packages as being theft, so you can take that for what it's worth.

Contributing equally to the drop is a reduction in burglaries—thefts from homes and garages. Interestingly, though, the number of crimes categorized as less-serious "theft from building" has increased 50% since last year.

On the other hand, criminal sexual assault is at an all-time high, with 29 cases reported this year.

Aggravated assault, which are generally threats to harm someone while brandishing a knife or handgun, are up 38% this year; motor vehicle theft is seeing a 19% surge; and aggravated battery—causing great physical harm to a person—is up 17%.

The record-high robbery rate in Wrigleyville and Boystown saw a dramatic improvement in 2014. But those improvements stalled out this summer and are now showing signs of worsening with September recording a near 100% increase in muggings.


Compared to the same time period last year, Chicago police took 245 fewer reports in the Lakeview community area through October 15, representing a 5% reduction in crime reports filed.

The bulk of the reduction is the result of fewer burglary reports being filed—94 fewer this year, to be exact. The next greatest reduction came with a sharp decline in criminal damage to property reports, which are down by 83 cases. A reduction in narcotics cases is the third-biggest contributor to the drop in Lakeview crime reports.

Showing the greatest increase in Lakeview's raw numbers this year are simple battery, motor vehicle theft, and criminal sexual assault.

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  1. I just deleted you guys from my favorites - off to Japan. Sold the condo. Hope you guys stay safe.

    1. I bet you will still read it. We moved and still read the blog multiple times a day. CWB will end up with a journalism award some day in the future. The only real reporting in Chicago and always interesting reading.

  2. Clearly the Lakeview area is being targeted by criminals who live in other parts of the city. I see people roaming around suspiciously all the time.

    1. That's just Tunney and his staff. They'll do nothing, don't worry.

  3. Guessing the drug arrests are down because the cops don't care about drug dealing unless it's a large amount. I reported to two different officers that I've been watching drug drops on Aldine many mornings when out walking my dog. I'll see people bending over into plants and weeds leaving small items out of view and a short time later I'll see someone else go and pick through the weeds to look for and then take the item. This particularly happens in front of the Chirch between Halsted and Clark, the same place homeless people hang out in front of on Sundays, but also several other prime spots. When I mentioned it to the police they said that by my description of the packages, it didn't sound like large enough amounts to bother with. So they're obviously content letting rampant drug dealing to go on in the open because individual amounts are small. Lovely.

  4. Keep in mind that 98% of narcotics calls are self initiated by the police through aggressive street stops. The easiest way to reduce a narcotics problem is to not stop or arrest anyone. Then they drop in numbers and you would think that there is some great work going on. What a joke.

    1. This whole thing is a joke. What liars! We pay these people! How dare they outright deceive us straight to our faces. This must be exposed and people need to lose their jobs.

  5. Robberies:

    I think robberies are a key focus crime (logically so) for residents and also as reported on this blog.

    +100% in September is really bad, we are obviously having some kind of spike.

    Where are we year to date on those? Compared to 2014 (which was low) and the 2011-2013 bad years?

    If we're flattish YTD then you guys should say so, even if we don't believe the reported numbers (crimes getting downgraded). Don't misdirect by comparing only September when the rest of your numbers are YTD, playing that game is what Tunney & CPD does.

    This blog is the #1 reason public perception has changed in Lakeview, and pressure is mounting on the Alderman to fix the problem. So thank you from the bottom of my heart for all your hard work, I'm not trying to be argumentative, just transparent. People want the straight talk, and you guys are valued because you speak the truth and save everyone a ton of time and effort trying to piece together relevant trends from the Chicago Crime Data Portal.

    Also when specific details about instances of crime are made public (like you guys report), one realizes that they are not just numbers on a page and one armed robbery is too many and we should demand more resources to address the problem, regardless of the recent trend.

    1. Wrigleyville/Boystown had 97 robberies this year through the end of September, compared to 112 during the same period last year. That puts it on-pace with 2007. The troubling part is that the strong improvements that had been made last year and during the first half of this year appear to be stalling out. There is much more work to be done.

      Through October 15, Lakeview as a whole saw 23 fewer robberies recorded and the 44th ward had 14 fewer.

    2. A straight answer. Thank you. That's what makes you guys the best.

      I pulled the crime data and got the same answer myself. We were having a pretty good year, but the last 6-8 weeks have blown all of that up and the fear in the neighborhood is palpable. My neighbors are bringing it up to me that never talk about crime. Also 11 of the 26 robberies in the 44th ward in September happened between 5AM and 9PM, which has only happened one other time in the last 24 months (December '14).

      I don't think the police can necessarily control when a spree happens, but when they're not catching these guys its a really bad sign because it encourages them to come back again.

      The CAPS changes are a huge red flag, and the wrong way to address the issue. Terrible leadership from CPD & Tunney.

  6. "Making robberies into larcenies. Making rapes disappear. You juke the stats, and majors become colonels. I've been here before."

    We've all been here before.Year after year. How is this still able to go on with all the reporting being done about juking the stats? I hoped the Chicago Magazine articles would blow this corrupt system wide open, but it quickly fizzled out. And each subsequent report by you or other media exposing the #crimeisdown ruse also quickly fizzle.

    Why is there not a full blown official investigation?!?! Why is this not national news?!?