Vandalism in and around Airdrie is starting to show up more often, and the RCMP are doing what they can to combat it.
Under the criminal code, mischief could be under $5,000 or over $5,000. This includes things like spray painting, graffiti, and breaking glass or windows on public property.
James McConnell, a Corporal with the Community Policing Unit was able to provide how many complaints they have received when it comes to mischief:
- 2018: 706
- 2019: 590
- 2020: 586
- 2021: 657
- 2022: 688
"When we look at our five-year crime trends 2020, and 2021, as a result of the pandemic, we're going to see skewed stats, just because people's patterns and behaviours were different."
According to McConnell coming out of the pandemic and things returning to normal, the warmer months are when mischief cases go on the rise.
McConnell was also able to provide some statistics for 2023 so far when it comes to mischief reports:
- January: 39
- February: 33
- March: 35
- April: 53
"Sometimes it may seem minor, but when damages occurred to vehicles or property of any kind, letting us know helps so we can coordinate our patrols around there."
For example, he explained when it comes to graffiti, lots of the people that commit the crime leave a tag behind, so when lots of tags start showing up and they are able to catch the criminal in action, they are able to connect all the graffiti they have made.
This upcoming summer, the RCMP will be continuing their Bike Patrol Program.
"It allows us to get out and engage with the community to have those conversations where community members can approach us with information and tell us where there are problem areas. It helps us build those relationships, and the increased presence in those places where we are seeing graffiti and mischief."
According to McConnell, mischief can be an underreported crime, and he hopes if any Airdronian does see something suspicious, they let the RCMP know.
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