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Beach Park reports less crime in village

Updated: March 2, 2013 11:35AM

Beach Park officials reported this week that crime in the village has been taking a vacation.

“I am pleased with the reports the village receives showing that crime, by and large, is on the decline, not on the rise, even in this economy,” said Mayor John Hucker.

“When you compare this over yearly averages, we are on the right path. I am very positive with all of the community involvement we have here in Beach Park that this trend will continue,” he said. Hucker said they are coming to the end of a three-year contract with the Lake County Sheriff’s Department where they pay for additional patrols and deputies. They contract for two shifts during the day manned by one deputy per shift. Overnight coverage is covered by the sheriff’s office as part of their regular patrol duties in District 1.

“The sheriff’s deputies have been very good. They’ve been responsive and helpful,” he said.

The sheriff’s office recently reported that the total number of incidents went down from 2011 to 2012 and is lower than any of the five previous years. The average is usually around 2,100 to 2,200 and in 2012 there were 1,974.

There was a rash of automobile burglaries at the end of the year with 19 reported in November and December, but the total number of those incidents, 63, were still down compared to the year before when there were 66. Burglary incidents totaled 80 in 2012, down from 105 in 2011.

Two individuals were arrested for the automobile burglaries at the end of last year, and deputies recovered a number of stolen items to return to residents.

Other statistics included 38 batteries when the average is about 50; thefts average about 110 and there were 107 in 2012; accidents usually average 320, but 2012 saw only 272; thefts average about 20 a year, but there were only 9 in 2012.

“Traffic stops were up the last three years, but I see that as a positive,” said Jon Kindseth, administrative services director for Beach Park.

He said the drops in crime has come at a time when they have more interest from residents in Neighborhood Crime Watch. “We had about 30 to 35 people turn out at our last meeting,” he said, “and that’s a good thing for the village.” That meeting was held to discuss the crime statistics.

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