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Overall crime reaches 15-year low in S.L., according to city’s top law enforcer

Feb 5, 2024, 9:44 PM

Salt Lake City Police car...

FILE: Overall crime in Salt Lake City took a big dip in 2023, according to the city's mayor and top law enforcer. (Salt Lake City Police Department)

(Salt Lake City Police Department)

SALT LAKE CITY — Overall crime in Salt Lake City took a big dip in 2023, according to the city’s mayor and top law enforcer.

On Monday, Mayor Erin Mendenhall and Chief Mike Brown announced overall crime in the city reached a historic 15-year low last year and, overall, crime dropped 11% in 2023. The chief says that includes a 10% drop in violent crimes — although, the number of homicides remained unchanged — and a 12% reduction in property crime.

According to the city’s statistics, rape, robbery, burglary and car thefts were all down in 2023, while the number of domestic violence-related aggravated assaults and larceny crimes such as shoplifting increased. The department responded to 13,371 property and violent crimes, combined, in 2023, compared to more than 15,000 in 2022, more than 16,000 in 2021 and more than 17,000 in 2020.

The mayor highlighted a couple of large operations carried out by the police department in 2023 to commend its good work. She noted a crime suppression effort focusing on the area around the New Yorker social club, 60 W. Market Street, resulted in 15 arrests between June and July and the seizure of six firearms. Mendenhall also commended the department’s gang unit for its efforts in cracking down on a THC vape distribution ring that resulted in more than 10 people being arrested.

Brown credits the drop in crime, in part, to the partnerships the department has made with federal and state law enforcers, as well as community leaders. He also credits the department’s new data-driven enforcement efforts.

“The reduction in crime we have seen in Salt Lake City is because of the intentional and dedicated work of our officers and our criminal justice partners,” the chief said. “This is not a fluke. Nor is our mission accomplished. Our work is not done.”

Mendenhall also gave credit to the Police Community Response Team, which was created to help free up sworn officers for higher priority calls. The community response team is made up of people who don’t have full law enforcement power, but can check on incidents such as 911 hang-up calls which would normally take time away from officers. The Police Community Response Team handled more than 3,400 calls last year.

“They are an essential part of public safety in Salt Lake City,” she said.

Also on Monday, the city unveiled its new crime dashboard that allows the public to see the latest crime numbers and trends in Salt Lake City. The statistics will be updated once a month.

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Overall crime reaches 15-year low in S.L., according to city’s top law enforcer