Wetaskiwin was named Canada’s eighth most dangerous community by Maclean’s magazine.                                File photo

Wetaskiwin was named Canada’s eighth most dangerous community by Maclean’s magazine. File photo

Wetaskiwin named Canada’s eighth most dangerous community

Wetaskiwin ranked last by Maclean’s for youth crimes

The City of Wetaskiwin may have recently been named Canada’s eight most dangerous community by Maclean’s magazine, but the city has seen a decrease in many areas of crime since 2016.

The placement of eight refers to the category of overall crime and is out of a list of 229 communities.

On Nov. 28 the City of Wetaskiwin released a statement addressing the ranking.

“The local RCMP detachment is pleased to see a reduction in the severity of crimes from the previous year,” said Inspector Keith Durance, Detachment Commander of the Wetaskiwin RCMP, in the statement.

“We will continue to work diligently with city council, Wetaskiwin residents, and our policing partners to develop crime reduction strategies in order to ensure our community’s safety,” he added.

The city of Wetaskiwin has seen a decrease in firearms offenses, robberies, breaking and entering, and drug trafficking since last year.

In closing, the statement reads, “The City of Wetaskiwin is committed to ensuring Wetaskiwin remains a safe, strong, and proud community, and is actively working with residents on many safety-focused initiatives. One recently developed initiative — the ‘Let’s Chat, Wetaskiwin’ public engagement panel — surveys residents and stakeholders on many topics, including public safety issues. Feedback is then used to guide public policy, and other local initiatives.”

According to Maclean’s, Wetaskiwin’s crime severity index (CSI) and violent crime severity index (VCSI) have both dropped, although remain above the national average. In terms of violent crime, Wetaskiwin has been raked 14th of 229.

The CSI is a measure of all police reported crime, taking into account the volume and seriousness of offences.

Maclean’s broke its report into 14 sub-categories of crime: all crime, violent crime, homicide, sexual assault, assault, firearms offences, robbery, breaking and entering, fraud, impaired driving, cannabis trafficking, cocaine trafficking, other drug trafficking, and youth crime.

When it comes to homicide Wetaskiwin was ranked at 226, making it the lowest city in Alberta for that sub-category. Under sexual assault Wetaskiwin placed 17th; sixth in assaults; 60th for firearms offences; 36th under robbery; 21st for breaking and entering; 18th in fraud; seventh in impaired driving; 195th for cannabis trafficking; 13th in cocaine trafficking; 25th in other drug trafficking; and 229th of 229 for youth crimes.

On Maclean’s list, 30 Canadian communities were represented.

To explore the full ranking list visit http://www.macleans.ca/canadas-most-dangerous-places/.

amelia.naismith@pipestoneflyer.ca