On February 9, 2017, Marco Island Police Chief Al Schettino announced a significant and continued reduction in crime, as measured by the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) program.
The FBI’s UCR program is a nationwide, cooperative statistical effort of nearly 18,000 law enforcement agencies with a primary objective to generate reliable information for use in law enforcement administration, criminologists, sociologists, legislators, and the media. “Part I” offense classifications included the violent crimes of murder and non-negligent manslaughter, rape, robbery, and aggravated assault, and the property crimes of burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft and arson.
The Marco Island Police Department investigated 96 index crimes in 2016. This is the lowest number of index crimes reported on Marco Island since the inception of the department in 2000.
When comparing 2000 to 2016, a 76% reduction of crime is observed. When contrasting the prior year’s (2015) 148 index crimes, Marco Island noted a 35% decrease. More specifically when comparing 2015 to 2016, violent crimes have declined 83.5%, while property crimes have been reduced 31.7%. No violent or property type crime measured by the UCR increased in 2016.
While the prevention and investigation of all crimes are important, it is universally held that crimes against persons are a priority for law enforcement agencies nationwide. In 2016, simple assaults decreased 24%, while aggravated assaults decreased 87.5%. Of special note, total domestic violence related offenses decreased 37.9% over the past year.
Arrests for all offenses combined increased 27.5% in 2016, as did the department’s clearance rate for index crimes, which improved 11%. Finally, the community experienced a significant reduction in the value of property stolen from just under one million dollars in 2015, to nearly $250K in 2016.
Chief Schettino stated that the continuing reduction in crime was the direct result of the notable efforts of the men and women of the Marco Island Police Department, to include its important partnerships with the community, and our local, county, state and federal partners. The officers and staff of the Marco Island Police Department recognize that the prevention of crime provides the best measure of a department’s effectiveness and has a correlation to maintaining as well as improving the quality of life for those that work, live, and learn on, as well as visit our island paradise.