SPOKANE, Wash.--Violent crime across Spokane decreased more than 5% from 2012 according to Spokane Police Department leaders.
Spokane Police Chief Frank Straub proposed the department be reorganized to continue tackling both violent crime and property crime.
Straub said one of his top priorities was to tackle crime in Downtown Spokane. He opened a sub-station for that reason. Straub wants to take that same effort and duplicate it across the City.
One woman who works in Downtown said the police department’s efforts to reduce crime by having added patrols and the Riverside sub-station are working.
“I love that. I really do. Because the police come and go. Police cars are always around. It really does make a difference,” said Vera Winslow.
Police officers said they are also noticing the results.
There have been hundreds of fewer reports of violent crime and thousands of fewer property crimes in 2013 than 2012.
“That tells us the things we're doing are successful. Because that is one of our main goals, to reduce crime in the city,” said Captain Judy Carl with the Spokane Police Department.
Spokane Police Department leaders said one of the most successful strategies has been focused patrols and an emphasis on strategic locations like Downtown Spokane.
“We have been able to do priority policing. Putting people in an area they feel responsible for and have a total knowledge of,” said Carl.
Both violent and property crime could be lower than they have been in years if the crime trends stay on pace through the end of 2013.
“I've had my house broken into twice, my car broke into three times, and stolen twice... but not in the last two years,” said Winslow.
Straub said he knows it will take added manpower to accomplish all of their goals. The Spokane Police Department is hoping to gain 300 more officers by 2015.