La Mirada crime drops significantly

La Mirada crime rates fall by 49 percent due to fewer property crimes.

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La Mirada crime drops significantly

Infographic by Angelica Abalos/THE CHIMES

Infographic by Angelica Abalos/THE CHIMES

Infographic by Angelica Abalos/THE CHIMES

Alondra Urizar, Writer

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In 2014, La Mirada Public Safety reported a decrease in Part 1 crime, which consists of homicide, rape, larceny, burglary, automobile theft, robbery, assault and arson by 49 percent since 2005. The drop makes the current crime rate the lowest crime rate since statistics were first taken in 1986. The largest decrease in crime came from property crimes including burglaries, larcenies and vehicle thefts.

Crimes all over the nation are reported yearly to the Federal Bureau of Investigation and are published by the Uniform Crime Reporting Program under the FBI. La Mirada’s Public Safety team cooperated with other agencies to help reduce crime. La Mirada was once again named one of the safest cities in Los Angeles County and experienced one of the region’s lowest crime rates according to annual crime reports. In 2014, only 707 Part 1 crimes were reported, while in 2013 there were 905.

Andrew Vialpando, senior administration analyst for La Mirada, encourages the city to participate in the neighborhood watch program where residents can learn how to properly observe and report any suspicious activities.

“I think the most effective approach that we’ve really taken on was expanding our neighborhood watch program. We’ve managed to hold one big neighborhood watch meeting in every single reporting district which was a huge accomplishment because basically, we’ve been able to reach out to every single resident and business in La Mirada,” Vialpando said.

Lt. Kevin Beggs from the Norwalk sheriff’s station has his deputies actively patrol the Norwalk and La Mirada areas. Deputies rarely catch crime as it is happens, but he says they have an excellent relationship with the citizens of La Mirada who are constantly sending tips to the sheriff’s department.

“Every day my phone is ringing off the hook and we constantly get information on potential suspicious activity, and we don’t use their names ever. Without the citizens, you would not see the low crime stats that we have,” Beggs said.

Both Vialpando and Beggs say that without Biola’s Campus Safety, there could possibly be many more crimes

“Your public safety team over there is outstanding. I think it’s probably one of the best school campus police agencies in the nation. The chief over there, all your officers over there are very well trained, they got all the best equipment, and me and the chief over there, we stay tight. We talk at least once a week,” Beggs said.

For the 2015 year, the strategy aims to continue to lower the crime rate and educate businesses and residents of La Mirada on crime trends and prevention techniques to continue providing a safe community.