New numbers show crime down in Myrtle Beach

By A.J. Ross - bio | email

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – New statistics released by the Myrtle Beach Police Department show crime dropped significantly this summer compared to last summer.

During the months of May, June and July, officers say they received nearly 5,000 fewer calls for service and made nearly 4,000 fewer arrests compared to the same time period in 2009.

"There's an ebb and flow in crime along with a number of other factors that are involved such as the economic climate - the weather, the number of people that come into town," Capt. David Knipes, spokesman for the Myrtle Beach Police Department said. "We would like to see these numbers continue to go down and not just over a four month period, but from year to year to year."

Knipes says the total number of violations including felonies and misdemeanors has also dropped off, from 21,387 in 2009 to 13,279 in 2010.  While the numbers show some positive changes, Knipes says there is still room for improvement.

"Statistics don't show the amount of criminal activity. There's a lot of criminal activity that also goes unreported, or not observed until a later period of time," Knipes admitted.  "Certainly we're happy about the numbers, but there's certainly a lot more that can be done."

Community watch programs are one area police say they would like to continue to expand.

"It's important to work with the community watches they've been very good of notifying us of what's going on," PFC Sean Fay of the Myrtle Beach Police Crime Prevention Unit said.  "Who better to know what's happening in a neighborhood than the residents that live there. We can't be all places at all times, so they act as our eyes and ears when we're not around."

If you may be interested in starting or joining a community watch group, contact (843) 918-1806.

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