Yakima Serious Crime Rates Down for First Half of the Year - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Yakima Serious Crime Rates Down for First Half of the Year

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YAKIMA, Wash.--It would seem like the City of  Yakima is off to a good start. For the first 6 months of 2013, auto theft has gone down more than 30 percent compared to the same 6 months in 2012.
 
For an area that ranks fifth in the nation per capita for auto theft, city officials said this is an encouraging decline.
 
"Hopefully if we keep this trend up we'll drop out of the unglamorous position," said Yakima City Manager Tony O'Rourke. "And overall, in addition to declining auto thefts we've declined in homicides, rapes, assaults."
 
The city said in total serious crimes have gone down by 9 percent for the first six months of the year. Some community members said they've noticed crime reduction, and they're starting to feel safer in their neighborhoods.
 
"You just don't hear about it like you used to, and I mean you can walk into the store, leave your car unlocked for a minute and you're not worried that something's going to happen," said Elizabeth Montandon, a Yakima resident.
 
"I think I feel safer on my block, on my side of town too," said Billy Wright.
 
But others have yet to feel this same sense of security and think the crime rate is still way too high.
 
"I would like to see a stronger patrol," said Shirley Boisselle. "I know they're doing what they can now with what they have to do with."
 
"That's punctuated unfortunately by the gang violence, and auto theft," said O'Rourke. "It still creates insecurity among our public, and we need to change that."
 
The city said they hope to see continued progress on reducing crime rates so they can assure people that their community is getting safer and more secure than it was in the past.
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