In response to questions about the effect of the pandemic on crime within the city, Prince George RCMP have released some comparative crime statistics.

The comparison examines crime this past March against March of last year, and this past April 1st-April 22nd against the same span of time in 2019.

(Table supplied by RCMP)

Violent crime against individuals was up slightly in March, but down nearly 25% in April.

Domestic Assaults are included in the Violence Offences category and have a significant impact.

In March, domestic assaults were up nearly 10%, but in April were down more than 9% from the same time the previous year.

Property crimes have been a major public concern, although official statistics show an increase of only one incident in March, although this represented a 7.7% growth.

April saw a slight decrease in property crimes, as there were 2 fewer incidents, resulting in a drop of 12.5%.

Shoplifting reports understandably decreased in both months, 35% and 75% in March and April, respectively.

Store closures and strictly controlled access to retail locations may be a factor.

Because of the notable decrease in shoplifting, there has been a substantial reduction in theft across Prince George.

Police reported an increase in suspicious circumstances and unwanted person reports for both months, which they suspect may be due to more people being at home during COVID-19, and reporting what they see.

From March 25th to April 22nd the Detachment has received between one and five COVID-19 related calls each day.

Many of these calls are related to concerned members of the public reporting other community members who are not following social distancing or self-quarantine rules.

Anyone concerned about violations to social distancing or self-quarantine rules should contact 311 within city limits, or 1-888-COVID-19 (1-888-268-4319) outside of The City of Prince George.