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New Report Highlights Drop In Alaska Crime

September 11, 2020 (Anchorage, AK) – The Department of Public Safety has published the Crime in Alaska 2019 report, noting a decrease in Alaska’s overall crime rate by nearly 10%. The number of reported offenses is the second lowest level in five years, mirroring the national downward trend in crime rates. While Alaska’s reported violent crime rate decreased almost 2%, the reported murder rate increased significantly from 2018 to 2019. Alaska’s property crime rate decreased 11.4% in 2019 and in the last five years, only 2015 had a lower reported property crime rate. Motor Vehicle Theft offenses saw a 34.1% crime rate decrease in 2019.

The Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program is a nationwide cooperative effort by federal, state, city, county and tribal law enforcement agencies to report data on crimes reported in their jurisdiction. The document is a major resource for measuring the trend and distribution of crime in Alaska. In 2019, 32 agencies reported crime data to DPS, and all thirty-two agencies provided twelve months of crime data to the department. These agencies represent 99.5% of the state’s population.

“While it is encouraging that crime, in general, has decreased in Alaska, public safety requires a long-term, comprehensive effort with laser focus on supporting survivors and holding offenders accountable. We know there is still much work that can be done to keep Alaskans safe,” said Commissioner Amanda Price, Department of Public Safety. “The DPS is aggressively working on its recruitment efforts to bring a larger law enforcement presence across Alaska. Additionally, we continue to partner with our federal and local law enforcement counterparts to do what we can to collectively further decrease crime across our state.”

Caution should be exercised when comparing data from year to year and making conclusions as the report does not account for when an incident actually occurred, it accounts for when it was reported. For example, a burglary or theft occurring in November of one year may not have been discovered and reported until February of the next year. The incident is not retroactively applied to a previous year’s data, it is counted in the year it was reported. The same applies for assaults, sexual assaults and homicides.

The Crime in Alaska 2019 report was authored by DPS’s Division of Statewide Services. The Division of Statewide Services provides technical and specialized services to the other divisions of the Department of Public Safety, local State and Federal Law enforcement, and the public at large. Past Crime in Alaska Reports and Felony-Level Sex Offenses reports can be found online here.

The calculations represented in Crime in Alaska are made utilizing the index offense totals for the current and previous year as well as population estimates provided by the FBI. The overall violent crime and property crime indices decreased in 2019. The crime rate, which relates the incidence of crime to population, experienced similar fluctuations as the index totals. All facts are important to consider when reviewing the fluctuations in the crime index and rate variances between 2018 and 2019. 

The UCR and Crime in Alaska reports are based on the Federal Bureau of Investigation UCR Program definitions of crimes to ensure consistency and uniformity in reported offenses on a national level.  The definitions do not always echo state definitions; therefore, federal publications cannot accurately be compared to reports that use the state definitions for crimes as these are unique to each state.  Additionally, the population counts for Crime in Alaska come from the US Census; the numbers used in Crime in AK are based on the numbers the FBI pulls from the census data on a specific date. 
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Troopers Conclude Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over Campaign

(ANCHORAGE, Alaska) – The Annual National Anti-DUI campaign Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over High Visibility Enforcement Effort ended earlier this week.  This year the campaign ran from Aug. 14 through Sept. 8. During that time, Alaska State and Wildlife Troopers had the following contacts: - 42 misdemeanor DUI arrests, 3 felony DUI Arrests
 
  • 42 misdemeanor DUI arrests, 3 felony DUI Arrests
  • 73 drivers charged with driving with a suspended or revoked license
  • 55 REDDIs reported with 31 drivers contacted and ultimately determined not to be DUI
  • 113 damage only crashes 25 injury crashes and 2 fatal collisions were investigated by troopers
  • Of the 1715 citations issued, 1002 were issued for speeding and 82 issued for seatbelt or other occupant restraint violations
Alaskans can continue to help keep our roadways safe by not driving under the influence of alcohol, marijuana or any other substance that can cause impairment or drowsiness. Additionally, motorists witnessing others driving dangerously are encouraged to make a REDDI report (Report Every Dangerous Driver Immediately) by calling 911. To learn more about REDDI, visit http://www.dot.alaska.gov/stwdplng/hwysafety/REDDI.shtml.
 
Funding for the Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over high-visibility enforcement campaign was funded by grants distributed by the Alaska Highway Safety Office.

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Halfway Stats for Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over Campaign

August 28, 2020 (ANCHORAGE) – The Alaska State Troopers have been working hard to keep impaired drivers off Alaska’s roadways during the Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over national campaign. This year the high visibility enforcement effort runs from Aug. 14 through Sept. 8 and is designed to discourage impaired drivers from hitting the highways. Troopers implore motorists to always keep safety in mind. If you have consumed anything that could impair your ability to drive any motorized vehicle, please stay out of the driver’s seat.

So far, from 8/14/2020 thru 8/27/2020, Troopers have accomplished the following:
 
  • 20 misdemeanor DUI arrests, 2 felony DUI Arrests
  • 34 drivers charged with driving with a suspended or revoked license
  • 27 REDDIs reported with 14 drivers contacted and ultimately determined not to be DUI
  • 64 damage only crashes 14 injury crashes and 0 fatal collisions were investigated by troopers
  • Of the 936 citations issued, 579 were issued for speeding and 58 issued for seatbelt or other occupant restraint violations
Alaskans can help keep our roadways safe by not driving under the influence of alcohol, marijuana or any other substance that can cause impairment or drowsiness. Additionally, motorists witnessing others driving dangerously are encouraged to make a REDDI report (Report Every Dangerous Driver Immediately) by calling 911. To learn more about REDDI, visit http://www.dot.alaska.gov/stwdplng/hwysafety/REDDI.shtml.

Funding for the Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over high-visibility enforcement campaign was funded by grants distributed by the Alaska Highway Safety Office.
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