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Unless recruits are put into the pipeline soon, the department could head into the busy summer crime season with fewer than 800 officers.
“It’s January, and summer comes quick,” said Delmonico.
Where crime is down
Citywide, the number of burglary cases dropped by 167 cases, or about 3.5 percent.
In the Second Precinct, where burglary numbersdropped 13 percent, Lt. Bruce Jensen said a focus on repeat offenders helped.
“Recidivism is what drives the numbers for property crimes,” he said.
“You don’t have people who shoot 50 people a year, but you do have people who commit 50 burglaries a year.”
Crime alerts and tips from the precinct’s residents have helped the police crack down on burglars as well, he said.
Burglary numbers dropped in downtown, northeast, southeast and north Minneapolis but rose slightly in the south and southwest parts of the city.
Harteau said she’s also pleased with the work the department did with juveniles in 2013, pushing juvenile crime down by about 4.6 percent.
Some of that work has been done by the Minneapolis Youth Coordinating Board, which sent people out onto Nicollet Mall seven days a week over the summer months to talk with young people. The program dropped to five days a week in the fall before wrapping up in November.
The Downtown Youth Street Outreach Project tried to steer kids toward positive events at the library, downtown YMCA and elsewhere.
Harteau said she’s planning a youth leadership summit for later this year, primarily for African-American and East African youths.
She’s also forming a youth “Chief’s Advisory Council” to hear what the city’s young people need.
“I’d really like to see our next line of community leaders come from this group,” Harteau said. “They’ve got the solutions. We need to bring them to the table.”
Matt McKinney • 612-673-7329