Victoria Police Department

The Victoria Police Department responds to an incident in October 2019.

The number of violent crimes in Victoria in 2019 was almost 20% higher than the average of the past five years.

Victoria Police Chief J.J. Craig will present the Victoria Police Department’s annual report to Victoria City Council on Tuesday, which outlines crime reported in 2019 as well as several other performance measurements for the department.

“Our department has embraced relational policing as a model for developing relationships between the community and the officers they come in contact with,” he wrote in the report. “This annual report supports that effort by providing a transparent review of department operations and results.”

The Victoria Police Department reports violations of criminal law as either Class I or Class II crimes. Class I crimes include murder, rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, theft and motor vehicle theft.

According to the report, the number of violent crimes increased about 8.5% in 2019 from 2018. The 2019 total was about 19.8% higher than the five-year average.

Class II crimes encompass all other offenses, which include criminal mischief or vandalism, DUI, drugs and narcotics, forgery and counterfeit, fraud, liquor law violations and other offenses. The total number of Class II crimes increased by about 17.52% in 2019 from 2018.

The department responded to 93,487 calls for service in 2019 while meeting its benchmark for average response time to Priority 1 emergency calls for service at 5.43 minutes, the report states.

“I am proud of the work being done by the dedicated men and women of our department and their continued commitment in serving our community,” Craig wrote in the report.

Also on Tuesday, Victoria City Council is scheduled to renew the employment agreements for the city manager and city attorney and hear a 2019 emergency management program review.

Morgan Theophil covers local government for the Victoria Advocate. She can be reached at 361-580-6511, or on Twitter.

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