Last week, Strathcona County RCMP highlighted initiatives that are helping bring down rural crime in the area. 

RCMP Superintendent Dave Kalist told virtual town hall participants that property crime has gone down in rural communities as a result of proactive law enforcement patrols. 

“As a result of the proactive patrols, we’re seeing property crime come down in the rural area, which is a positive, and we’ve also seen it come down in the urban area and we’re getting the feedback that says it is positive and we’re doing something right,” said Kalist. 

“As far as the stats go, I think we’re on track. Whenever you see crime going down, it is a good thing.”

To date, Strathcona County has reported 18,497 proactive patrol visits within municipal boundaries in both rural and urban areas. 

“This is a very safe community. We have a low crime severity index — (a rate of) 64 for 2019 for both urban and rural, and we’re doing really well when you compare us to other communities in Alberta,” said Kalist. 

Property crime in the area has been on a downward trajectory since the patrols were introduced. 

In October 2019, Strathcona County RCMP reported a 17% decrease of property crime incidents in the area where proactive patrols were present. 

According to Statistics Canada, rural communities in the prairies are disproportionately affected by higher rural crime rates than their urban counterparts. 

“As with most property crimes, rates of break and enter and motor vehicle theft were higher in the Prairie provinces, especially Alberta. In 2017, police reported 978 break and enter incidents per 100,000 population in rural Alberta,” claimed a 2017 Statistics Canada report.