POSTED AUGUST 7, 2007
Apart from the officer-involved shooting, Fiesta 2007 was absent any other major crime problems, according to a police report. Here are tentative results of police activity through late Saturday, including a comparison to Fiesta 2006:
- 21 felony arrests; a 34% decrease
- 97 misdemeanor arrests; a 4% increase
- 274 criminal citations; a 6% decrease
- 282 traffic citations; a 53% increase
- 18 DUI arrests; a 20% increase
CRIME IS UP AND DOWN.
Every so often the media, on a slow news day no doubt, will read the temperature of the "crime problem". What does it mean? Am I safer or less safe? Am I more or less likely to be arrested? Is humankind becoming more unruly? Most likely, none of the above. More people means more crime. So, we keep hiring more cops. More cops means more arrests. As long as the hiring of cops out-paces the population growth, the busier I will be.
If crime is not actually on the rise (beyond the modest increases one expects as the population grows), more conduct is deemed criminal and cops become more "sensitive" to criminal conduct. For example, it used to be "drunk driving", now it is "driving under the influence" (read: however slight). It used to be "drunk and disorderly conduct", now it is "public intoxication". What does that mean? Well, one cop (still out there) told me "it depends....could be as little as .01". Yes, consuming a third of a beer, according to this cop, is possibly a forfeiture of your freedom and a one-way ticket to the drunk tank. Think about that the next time you are trying to decide between an import or a domestic...