Oxnard Police Department Release Crime Stats for City
The FBI gathers crime statistics from law enforcement agencies each year as part of their Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program. The UCR Program collects data on four violent crime and four property crime categories. The purpose of the program is to generate a reliable set of crime statistics for use by law enforcement. The Oxnard Police Department has been a participating UCR agency for over forty (40) years and believes it is important to share the crime data with our residents.
The City of Oxnard began to see a rise in reported crime in 2012 for the first time in 20 years. The increase continued through 2015 but shifted to a decrease in 2016 with an overall crime reduction of 7.6%. This is the first downward trend in the last five (5) years. The UCR crime categories and the reported crime data for 2015 and 2016 are listed below:
The city experienced 12 homicides in 2016 which is commensurate with the 10-year city average of 12 homicides per year. Of the 12 homicide cases, 10 are still classified as open investigations. 11 of the 12 victims were male. 11 of the victims were Hispanic and 1 victim was African American. The predominant murder weapon in 2016 was a firearm; 9 of the victims were shot to death. 5 of the homicides are being investigated as gang related while another was classified as a domestic violence related murder/suicide.
This crime category had the most significant change in terms of percentage from 2015-2016. While the percentage change is alarming and generated some concern, it was subsequently determined that these cases were being misclassified as “unfounded” instead of “suspended” at the conclusion of the investigation by investigators.
The numbers prompted an immediate audit of our procedures as they involve investigating and closing out sexual assault cases. The internal inquiry did lead us to realize that we were misclassifying the dispositions of some incidents that led to the skewed data.
For purposes of crime classification and reporting, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the California Department of Justice define aggravated assault as “an unlawful attack by one person upon another for the purpose of inflicting severe or aggravated bodily injury. This type of assault is accompanied by the use of a weapon or by means likely to produce death or great bodily harm.” Injury is not necessary when a gun, knife, or other weapon that could cause serious personal injury is used. Reporting is required for each victim of an incident that meets the aforementioned definition.
Aggravated assaults decreased by 12.7% with 64 fewer aggravated assaults in 2016 as compared to 2015 statistics. Overall, aggravated assaults within the City of Oxnard have been trending downward for decades. During calendar year 1994, there were 1,073 aggravated assaults reported in the City with a population of 50,000 fewer people as compared to 438 during 2016.
For purposes of crime classification and reporting, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the California Department of Justice define robbery as “The taking or attempting to take anything of value from the care, custody, or control of a person or persons by force or threat of force or violence and/or by putting the victim in fear.”
Robbery accounted for an 11.4% increase or 44 additional crimes. Robberies to businesses had the largest increase with a 41.9% jump from the previous year. The increase can also be attributed to an increase in shoplifts that escalated to robberies. In 2015, 49 shoplifts were escalated to robberies as compared to 76 in 2016, accounting for 27 additional robberies.
For purposes of crime classification and reporting, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the California Department of Justice define larceny as “an unlawful taking, carrying, leading, or riding away of property from the possession or constructive possession of another.”
The crime category of larceny (theft) decreased by 9.4%. There were 4,309 larcenies reported during calendar year 2016 and 4,758 during 2015, a decrease of 449 incidents. The two driving forces behind the Larceny crime rate continue to be Shoplifting and Thefts from Motor Vehicles, accounting for 61% of all thefts in the City of Oxnard. Larceny is responsible for 61% of the total crime picture and is the most preventable.
Motor Vehicle Theft
For purposes of crime classification and reporting, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the California Department of Justice define motor vehicle theft as “the theft or attempted theft of a motor vehicle.” A motor vehicle is defined as a self-propelled vehicle that runs on land surface.
Motor vehicle theft decreased five and nine tenths of a percent (5.9%). There were 835 motor vehicle thefts reported during calendar year 2015 and 786 during 2016, 49 fewer crimes.
In summary, during calendar year 2016, there were 786 motor vehicle thefts reported, 743 stolen vehicles recovered, and 191 arrests for 10851 VC and/or 496d(a) PC. Oxnard’s stolen vehicle recovery rate in 2016 was nearly 95%. The national average for stolen vehicle recoveries during the past three years has ranged from 53% to 55%.