VicPD reports 567% increase in business break-ins amid pandemic
New statistics from the Victoria Police Department show a rise in a variety of crimes amid the COVID-19 pandemic: (CTV News)
VICTORIA -- The Victoria Police Department has released information on crime statistics amid the COVID-19 pandemic, which show a significant rise in some areas this year compared to the same time period last year.
The data show that reports of business break-ins have increased the most dramatically amid the pandemic.
According to VicPD, reports of break and enters at stores between March 15 and May 2 rose 567 per cent this year, compared to 2019.
In 2020, there were 80 reports of break-ins, compared to 12 in 2019.
Meanwhile, reports of theft and robbery also rose dramatically in 2020.
Vehicle thefts rose 42 per cent this year, up from 26 in 2019 to 37 in 2020. Thefts of items left in vehicles increased 26 per cent, up from 238 in 2019 to 301 in 2020.
Police say there has also been a steep 56 per cent rise in robberies this year, up from 16 in 2019 to 25 this year.
General reports of mischief rose by 40 per cent from 187 in 2019 to 262 in 2020.
Amid the pandemic, police say there has been a rise in domestic dispute reports, and a slight increase in domestic assault calls.
Domestic dispute reports rose 20 per cent from 122 in 2019 to 147 this year. At the same time, domestic assault calls rose 3 percent from 38 reports in 2019 to 39 in 2020.
Police say that other areas of crime have also decreased amid the pandemic.
Sexual assault reports declined 45 per cent this year from 20 in 2019 to 11 over the same period this year.
Meanwhile, impaired driving cases decline 19 per cent from 37 reports in 2019 to 30 in 2020.
With Victoria experiencing a rise in property crime, police recommend that residents avoid leaving valuables in plain sight in vehicles. Police also advise keeping track of serial numbers for high-value items to aid in their recovery, should they be stolen.
A full look at VicPD’s recent crime statistics can be seen below: