Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Largo police report a drop in serious crimes category

The Largo Police Department is reporting a drop in certain serious crimes.

A comparison of the first six months of last year and the same period this year, showed a 14 percent dip in a key category of crimes.

The grouping, called Part I crimes, includes homicide, sex offenses, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, larceny and auto theft.

Police Chief Lester Aradi mainly credits his department's low turnover and effective community policing for the decrease.

"The past year, I've had the luxury of retaining most of our officers," Aradi said. "Our officers are more seasoned and veteran officers are not engaged in training our new ones."

The dip in crime actually follows three years of increases. Last year, crimes in the same categories jumped by nearly 10 percent.

In recent years, the city has devoted a lot of resources to replacing five or six officers at a time, and several officers were pulled from other duties to train new recruits, Aradi said.

While the overall number of crimes in the category has dropped, two specific crimes have increased.

Last year, there were no homicides for this period. This year, there was one.

And robberies climbed from 56 in the first six months of last year to 63 for the same span this year.

In light of the current budget climate, Aradi said he has concerns about keeping crime down in the future.

The city now has 137 sworn officers, he said. And Largo administration is talking about furloughs for officers. Aradi is afraid his force will be stretched too thin.

"The challenge is trying to maintain this reduced crime rate with fewer and fewer resources," Aradi said.

Lorri Helfand can be reached at lorri@sptimes.com or (727) 445-4155.

Fast facts

Crime comparison for the first six months of last year
to the same period this year.


Crime

2008

2009
percent change
Homicide 0 1 100%
Sex offenses 38 37 -3%
Robbery 56 63 13%
Aggravated assault 172 156 -9%
Burglary 303 226 -25%
Larceny 1,199 1,067 -11%
Auto theft 140 78 -44%
Total 1,908 1,628 -14%

Largo Police Department

Largo police report a drop in serious crimes category 08/11/09 [Last modified: Tuesday, August 11, 2009 9:13pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. World's plastic waste could bury Manhattan 2 miles deep

    Environment

    WASHINGTON — Industry has made more than 9.1 billion tons of plastic since 1950 and there's enough left over to bury Manhattan under more than 2 miles of trash, according to a new cradle-to-grave global study.

    Plastic trash is compacted into bales ready for further processing at the waste processing dump on the outskirts of Minsk, Belarus.
  2. Sen. John McCain's type of cancer did not slow Tampa woman

    Health

    TAMPA —When 35-year-old Beth Caldwell heard about Sen. John McCain's brain tumor this week, she hoped he would stay positive.

    That's what helped her, she said.

    Beth Caldwell, 35, and her sons Gavin, 10, and Triston, 7. Caldwell had surgery to remove an aggressive brain tumor three years ago. [Photo Courtesy of Beth Caldwell]
  3. A week later, the lengthy, costly rebuilding plan for the Pasco sinkhole begins

    Public Safety

    LAND O'LAKES — A week after a massive sinkhole opened in Pasco County, county officials have begun planning the long-term cleanup, which could take months and millions of dollars.

    A sinkhole in Land O'Lakes, Fla., is seen Wednesday, July 19, 2017. The sinkhole ?‘ already one of the largest in Pasco County in decades ?‘ measures about 235 feet in width and 50 feet in depth, with the potential to expand further.
  4. Dade City's Wild Things blocks PETA officials at gates for court-ordered site inspection

    Wildlife

    Times Staff Writer

    DADE CITY — Dade City's Wild Things founder Kathy Stearns refused to let People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals officials enter her facility on Thursday for a court-ordered inspection, court filings show.

    Dade City's Wild Things founder Kathy Stearns refused to let People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals officials enter her facility on Thursday for a court-ordered inspection, court filings show. This comes four days after 19 Wild Things tigers arrived at the Greater Wynnewood Exotic Animal Park in Oklahoma. A judge had granted an emergency injunction July 14, ordering Stearns not remove any tigers pending the upcoming PETA inspection. Photo from Facebook page of the Greater Wynnewood Exotic Animal Park in Oklahoma.
  5. St. Petersburg City Council approves $326 million sewage fix

    Blogs

    ST. PETERSBURG — Last week the City Council learned no criminal charges would result from the up to 200 million gallons of sewage St. Petersburg's sewer system released from …

    [LARA CERRI  |  Times]