The number of violent crimes in 2011 was significantly lower than the number in 2010, according to the Evanston Police Department’s annual report.
There were 3 murders in 2011, as compared to 5 murders in 2010, according to Police Cmdr. Jay Parrott. Aggravated battery and assaults also went down by 23.8 percent, while police response to calls of shots fired declined by 28.3 percent.
Overall, there was a .3 percent reduction in crime between 2010 and 2011, Parrott reported. As in most years, the majority of crimes were thefts, and those actually increased by 4.1% in 2011. There were 1,607 thefts reported in 2010, as compared to 1,673 thefts in 2011.
“Of these reported thefts, many are crimes of opportunity in which items were left unattended by the owner,” Parrott said in a press release issued Tuesday. “Specifically, 163 reported thefts occurred by items being taken from unlocked vehicles.”
Parrott said two major undercover narcotics operations were undertaken in 2011, which may have contributed to the reduction in violent crimes. Operation Bloodhounds focused on the “Belizean Bloods” street gang, while “Operation Replay” focused on narcotics sales by street- and mid-level dealers in Evanston and nearby communities. According to Parrott, those two operations resulted in a total of 54 individuals arrested.
“Illegal drug dealing has a direct link to attributing to violent crime within criminal organizations,” Parrott said. “Evanston is a safer place because of these cooperative efforts by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Cook County Sheriff working with Evanston Police.”CRIME 2010 2011 Murder 5 3 Criminal Sexual Assault 8 5 Robbery 73 76 Aggravated Battery/Assault 126 96 Burglary 432 400 Theft 1607 1673 Motor Vehicle Theft 66 53 Arson 14 18