The Wetaskiwin RCMP department saw some changes over the 2016 year regarding different kinds of crime in the community.
A number of crimes saw increases in their numbers, but other have decreased since 2015: From 2015 to 2016 break and enters decreased to 131 form 175; Robbery jumped up to 24 from 13; Theft under $5,000 went down from 575 incidents to 538; Theft of a motor vehicle increased from 70 to 114; Mischief increased from 25 to 37; Assaults went up from 443 to 455; Sexual assault almost doubled to 23 from 13; Incidents of disturbing the peace decreased from 1,378 to 1,367; Missing persons went down from 310 to 162; Fraud increased from 108 to 129; Traffic accidents decreased from 402 to 328; False alarms decreased to 438 from 463 and Impaired operations jumped to 96 from 87.
Wetaskiwin RCMP Insp. Fran Bethell told City of Wetaskiwin councillors during her report at their Jan. 23 meeting that numbers of impaired drivers remained fairly consistent between 2015 and 2016. However, she added judging by the number of impaired seniors and impaired parent drivers people are not getting the message.
Bethell’s report stated, “2016, the highest reading for a breath test was 340 mgs (legal limit is 80).”
Bethell mentioned the department is also working with the province’s Habitual Offenders program, with three individuals registered.
The detachment continues its work building community relationships by participating in the Santa Claus Parade, helping with the charity check-stop, where about $12,000 was raised, and working with schools in areas of threat assessments and healthy relationship presentations.