Violent crime down, property crime up in Mountlake Terrace

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By Doug Petrowski

While the number of violent crimes reported in Mountlake Terrace was down in 2011 compared to 2010, the number of property crime incidents and various traffic infractions were up slightly. Those were some of the findings in the 2011 Mountlake Terrace Police Department Report shared by Police Chief Greg Wilson at Thursday’s night MLT City Council Work/Study Session.

There were 38 reported incidents of violent crime in the city in 2011 — one homicide, with the others being robbery, aggravated assault and rape. That total is down from the 52 violent crimes committed in Mountlake Terrace in 2010. Incidents of property crime — including burglary, larceny, theft and arson — totaled 599 in 2011, up from 553 in 2010.

A look at the most recent four-year crime statistics do show a much lower crime rate in Mountlake Terrace over this longer time span. Crime numbers dropped significantly from 2004-2007 to 2008-2011. “If you look at our last four-year totals, you can see we have a consistent trend in our crime statistics,” said Detective Sergeant Don Duncan.

“The City of Mountlake Terrace continues to be a safe place to live, work and visit,” Wilson said.

The Mountlake Terrace Police Department made 125 felony arrests and 1,299 misdemeanor arrests in 2011.They also issued 69 DUI infractions and 521 parking tickets during the past year.

Patrol officers conducted 7,644 “calls for service” and traffic stops in 2011, a total average of about 21 per day. These stops resulted in 4,409 traffic tickets issued to city drivers, about 12 per day. MLT officers conducted more service and traffic stops on average (273 in 2011) than officers in South Snohomish County’s neighboring cities — Lynnwood (212) or Edmonds (150). Only Brier’s seven patrol officers conducted more “calls for service” and traffic stops on average than officer in Mountlake Terrace, with an average of 437 per officer.

Larceny continues to be the city’s most prevalent non-violent crime, with 401 reported thefts in 2011. An additional 54 car thefts were reported in the same time frame. There were 380 reported thefts and 51 reported auto thefts in 2010.

Property code enforcement was also a significant part of the 2011 police department report. The department investigated 315 cases of property code violations; all but seven were resolved by property owners rectifying the violations before citations were issued.

Wilson and his staff were commended by council members after the report. “I think the department as a whole does a tremendous job in meeting its mission of serving, supporting and defending,” said Councilmember Doug McCardle.

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