Story by: KY3 Staff

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — The Springfield Police Department reports a drop in overall crime in 2018.

The department released its 2018 annual report Monday. It highlights department activities throughout the year. Chief Paul Williams says he is encouraged by his community’s support to stay safe.

“Crime (as reflected in the FBI Uniform Crime Report) decreased significantly, in total and across the board, in 2018, after generally inching upward annually over the last decade,” said Chief Williams. “The main reason for these positive results we experienced in 2018 is easily identified, and the answer to both areas is the same—it’s the people, the people of our department and the people in our community.”

Crimes against people and property dropped in Springfield by 18 percent.
The rate of crimes against persons (homicide, rape, robbery, aggravated assault) dropped by 1 percent, with 40 fewer incidents than in 2017.

A breakdown of the numbers shows aggravated assaults increased by four percent and analysis revealed much of the increase occurred in December when there was a significant increase in multiple victim incidents, where more than one person was assaulted. That number jumped from nine in December of 2017 to 27 in December of 2018. The total number of homicides in Springfield also rose in 2018. There were 16 incidents in 2018 compared to 14 incidents in 2017. However, only two deaths were related to domestic violence, a significant decrease from years past. Robberies dropped by nearly 23 percent. Sexual assault reports dropped by five percent.

Chief Williams highlighted the success of the opening of the Greene County Family Justice Center. Because of the center, victims now have on-site access to services such as crisis intervention, safety planning, child protection services, educational programs and more. Two domestic violence detectives work there.

The chief detailed the success of investigative operations, community engagement, promotions and awards received by department staff throughout the year in the report.

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