Clark County saw decrease in crime in 2011

Violent crimes fell in Vancouver after rising for two years

By Paul Suarez, Columbian web producer

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Violent and property crimes decreased in Clark County as a whole last year, while some areas saw an increase in crime, according to data published by the Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs on Monday.

Violent crimes, including murder, forcible rape, robbery and aggravated assault, dropped around the county from 990 in 2010 to 961 in 2011, a 2.9 percent decrease. Murder and robbery were up; forcible rape and aggravated assault were down.

Property crimes, including burglary, larceny (theft), motor vehicle theft, and arson, were down 6 percent in Clark County as a whole.

Total reported crime was down by 5.8 percent.

Clark County Sheriff’s Office

Total crime reported by the sheriff’s office in unincorporated Clark County was down 9.6 percent in 2011 compared to 2010.

Unlike most of the county, violent crime rose by 3.3 percent in the areas covered by the sheriff’s office. Murders increased from 1 to 2; rapes dropped by 12 to 48; robberies rose by 11 to 65; and aggravated assault rose by 8 to 133.

Property crime was down 10.4 percent. Arson, burglaries, theft and car theft all dropped.

Vancouver

Total reported crime was down 2.1 percent in Vancouver in 2011.

Vancouver is back in line with the national trend of declining numbers for violent crime. The past two years, Vancouver’s numbers increased. In 2011, they decreased 5.7 percent, according to the data. Murder jumped from 0 to 9 (five occurred during a single incident -- when Tuan Dao and five children died in a blaze he set on Easter morning at 15304 N.E. 13th Circle). Forcible rape was down by 10 to 102; robberies increased by 12 to 185 and aggravated assaults decreased by 39 to 337.

Property crime was down by 1.7 percent. Burglaries increased by 11 to 950. Arson, theft and auto theft dropped.

Battle Ground

Total crime decreased in Battle Ground by 15.9 percent from 2010 to 2011.

The number of violent crimes decreased by 2, for a 5.9 percent decrease. Aggravated assault was up but forcible rape and robbery were down.

Property crime was down 16.6 percent. Reported arsons, burglaries, theft sand auto thefts were down.

Camas

Crime was down 13.1 percent in Camas in 2011, compared to 2010. Violent crimes dropped by 50 percent, from 18 to 9. Property crime decreased 11.1 percent.

All subcategories of both violent and property crime were down, according to the data.

La Center

Total crime dropped 15.1 percent in La Center. Violent crime stayed flat (one was reported each year); 2010’s violent crime was a forcible rape while 2011’s was a robbery.

Property crime was down 15.4 percent. Burglaries jumped from 3 to 4; theft dropped from 47 to 37; and car theft increased from 2 to 3.

Ridgefield

Ridgefield’s total crimes and property crimes increased by 12.7 and 15 percent, respectively, in 2011. Violent crimes were down by one-third.

Robberies decreased from 2 to 0 and aggravated assaults increased from 1 to 2.

There were no cases of arson reported. Burglaries decreased 37.5 percent, theft increased 35.9 per

cent and motor vehicle theft was flat with 5 reported in both 2010 and 2011.

Washougal

Total reported crime was down by 10.3 percent in Washougal.

Violent crime was up 56.5 percent, due to a large jump in forcible rape (from 3 in 2010 to 8 in 2011) and a 35.3 percent increase in aggravated assault (from 17 to 23). There were two murders in 2011, both during the December incident where Steven Stanbary shot his wife and her sister before burning down his home. He also died in the incident. There were 3 robberies in both 2010 and 2011. Property crime was down 14.9 percent. Arsons increased from 5 to 10. Burglaries, theft and car theft were down.