Crime Stats Down in Tyler for 2001

Tyler may be growing, even the number of calls coming into the Tyler Police Department are on the rise, so it may surprise you crime's actually down in the city.

Police Chief Gary Swindle thinks he knows why.

"I think community policing has played a tremendous role in our efforts to reduce the crime rate, make people feel safer at home. I think that's the key," says Chief Gary Swindle.

When you break it down, violent crime, the homicides, sexual assaults and robberies are down 7.9% from 2000 to 2001. Burglaries, were up 11.69 %, a rash of back door burglaries scattered throughout Tyler played into that. Then the number of thefts went back down 6.17%. And despite some high profile south Tyler sexual assaults, the actual number declined by 20.

"You hear about certain crimes and you think certain crimes are up and then they're down so it's actually encouraging," says Jerry Schwarz.

What's not encouraging is the 8% increase in traffic accidents on Tyler's congested roads. Programs like "Click It or Ticket" and grants to pay for traffic officers who can write more tickets are planned for 2002. Increased patrol from north Tyler to south is comforting to concerned residents.

"They seem to be very visible and that helps in deterring crime," says Karen Alexander. But Chief Swindle says there are some things his officers can serve the people of Tyler better. At the top of his list getting crimes solved and quick so the criminals will locked up and the streets of Tyler will be even safer.