Christine Stuart file photo

Hartford Police Chief Daryl K. Roberts held a press conference today to announce that crime is down in the Capitol City.

He said crime is down 19.1 percent compared to where it was in 2005. He said over a five-year period it’s down 18.3 percent.

Roberts attributed the decrease in overall crime to “a total team approach targeting violent crime, on an ongoing-relationship with state and federal agencies, and on an emphasis on quality of life offenses.”

This team effort has resulted in 232 firearm seizures and 122 arrests related to firearms since January 2007. “A home visit to the family of a known gang member resulted in information for the seizure of nine firearms,” Roberts said in a press release.

Unfortunately, despite our ongoing efforts, in the second week of July we witnessed an acute rise in homicides within two of the City’s neighborhoods, he said.

Crime statistics show a 1.4 percent increase in shooting incidents over a five-year period, however, police calculated that shooting incidents were down 2.3 percent since 2005.

Roberts said this violence has resulted in a perception that public safety may be jeopardized and beyond the control of the police department.  In response, the Hartford Police Department has increased enforcement activity through both uniformed and investigative personnel in these areas. 

“There is no doubt in my mind that the success of the 2007 Safe Summer Initiative is due to the dedication, hard work and commitment of the men and women of the Hartford Police Department to make our city a safer place for us all, and to our many collaborators from the U.S. Department of Justice, FBI, Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, DEA, Connecticut State Police, and area police departments,” Roberts said.

“Most importantly, however, I want to express my appreciation to the crime solvers of the city – those people who have put their trust and support in the police department.  I am truly humbled by their willingness to help the the police in our efforts to reduce crime and the fear of crime – it is only with their support can we achieve this goal”, said Roberts.  “I am committed to our Safe Summer Initiative, as I believe it has had a substantial impact on crime.”