By Tia Will
There is a great deal of disagreement about which of the two candidates for DA will provide the greater degree of safety for our communities. One thing I believe we can agree upon is that, to the extent possible, substantiating one’s claims with evidence makes for a stronger, more objective argument than assertion alone.
It has been suggested in a number of comments on the Vanguard that the crime rate under current DA Jeff Reisig has been steadily dropping, with some exceptions over the past ten years.
In the interest of assessing this claim, we (RDC and myself) looked up statistics for the past 10 years for Yolo and six nearby counties. Being aware that county numbers of crimes will vary widely depending on the composition of the county, we chose to look at crime clearance rates, number of violent crimes for each county over time with trends and crime rates. The data on clearance rates and number of crimes was downloaded from the California Department of Justice web site and the crime rate chart is from the Public Policy Institute of California.
It is fair to say that the results for Yolo County during DA Reisig’s terms have been mixed. It is not accurate to assert that the crime rate has gone down steadily since he came into office. The number of violent crimes has declined overall but has shown some variability since 2006, with a significant increase between 2012 through 2015. The overall crime rate itself has increased in the past few years, while the rate in Sacramento County has shown a steady decline and Sutter County has generally gone down with a recent uptick. Yolo’s overall crime rate is almost back to where it was when Mr. Reisig took office in 2006.