By Jimmie Ferguson

Killeen Daily Herald

The Killeen crime rate was down overall in 2006, compared to 2005, but eight murders were reported both years.

"For example, violent crime dropped 3.31 percent compared with 2005, and nonviolent crime dropped 9 percent," said Killeen Police Department Chief Dennis Baldwin, who added that crimes reported in the city dropped in 2006 by 8.32 percent.

During 2006 there were 81 sexual assaults, 246 robberies, 453 aggravated assaults, 2,120 burglaries, 3,107 larcenies and 240 vehicle thefts.

In 2005, police figures indicate there were 85 sexual assaults, 236 robberies, 486 aggravated assaults 2,081 burglaries, 3,637 larcenies and 290 vehicle thefts.

"These (lower crime) results could not have been achieved without the support of the community and the dedicated men and women of the Killeen Police Department," Baldwin said. "While the Patrol Division is the backbone of the department, we would not have been as successful as we were had it not been for the men and women of the Criminal Investigation Division."

The Crimes Against Persons Section, Crimes Against Property Section, Organized Crime Unit and the Youth Services Unit all were instrumental in in solving numerous major felony cases and in bringing offenders to justice, Baldwin said.

"The quality of their work has been proven time and time again," Baldwin said. "Moreover, the district attorney's office has commented, on numerous occasions, about the overall quality of our department's work product. I think this speaks volumes about the dedication and professionalism of the department. It's an honor to be associated with such fine people."

Another area that has seen dramatic improvement, Baldwin said, is in the reduction of traffic accidents.

"We have seen a decrease of 17.6 percent in 2006, compared with 2005," he said. "The drop in accidents reflects the efforts of the community and the department working together to address traffic-related problems. When we have fewer accidents, we are seeing less injuries and property damage. Enforcement efforts are reflected in city police statistics as well. During 2006, the department wrote about 19,952 citations, 22.9 percent more than in 2005."

Quality of life issues, such as loud noise complaints, continue to be addressed.

During 2006, the department wrote 1,378 citations for loud noise violations, 53.5 percent more than in 2005, Baldwin said.

Contact Jimmie Ferguson at (254) 501-7554

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