REGINA – The crime rate and severity of crimes in Regina and Saskatchewan dropped slightly last year, but Regina still can’t drop the title of the murder capital of Canada according to new Statistics Canada numbers.
Regina’s 3.8 homicides per 100,000 people was the worst in the country, with Winnipeg second at 3.2 homicides per 100,000 people.
Saskatchewan recorded a nine per cent overall drop in the crime severity index from 2012 to 2013 based on police-reported crime, but it still has the worst rate in the country with Manitoba coming in second.
In Regina the crime severity index dropped to 109.3 – a seven per cent decrease – and the actual crime rate went down to 8,069 per 100,000 people – a drop of eight per cent.
Break and enters in Regina are still an issue with 639 per 100,000 people.
“Break and enters have been on the increase since last fall. We’ve been doing a lot of work in terms of public education on that front,” said Regina Police Chief Troy Hagen.
Vancouver is the worst city in the country for break and enters with 689 per 100,000 people.
Vehicle thefts in the Queen City dropped by 21 per cent from last year, but the city still had 378 thefts per 100,00 people which is tied for second with Edmonton. Saskatoon leads the country with 379.
In the last 10 years, the police-reported crime severity index for Regina has dropped by 53 per cent, compared to Saskatchewan which has dropped 35 per cent. Canada dropped 34 per cent.
“While we’re not pleased, obviously, with being number 1, I think it’s important to be balanced,” said Hagen. “I think it’s important to be focused on the rate of reductions that have occurred.”
Some of the top contributors to the decrease of the crime severity index for Regina include Break and Entering, Robbery and Theft of $5,000 or under.
Overall, Regina has some of the worst crime numbers in the country and the city still has work to do to improve the crime rate, but this is the lowest rate the city has had since 1991.
“I know that’s a catch phrase that were number 1 but I think part of it, hopefully part of the report will be that people feel safe in our community and that crime is actually going down at a faster rate,” said Mayor Fougere.
Crime severity index, 2009-13:
Violent crime severity index, 2009-13: