Oak Park crime rate continues downward trend

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Oak Park’s crime rate has been steadily declining every year since 2012. Results from the Illinois Uniform Crime Index revealed that this trend continued in 2015.

The Oak Pak Police Department investigated 1,568 crimes in 2015, down six percent from the 1,665 crimes reported in 2014 and far below Oak Park’s crime rates in the 1980s and 1990s, according to the Illinois Uniform Crime Index.

Graph comes courtesy of www.oakpark.us
Graph comes courtesy of www.oakpark.us

“The continued decline in the overall crime rate reflects the importance of residents and law enforcement working together,” said Police Chief Rick Tanksley. “But we still have to keep in mind that we live in an urban environment where a single incident can cause citizens to question their safety. It is at these times that police and the community must draw even closer together by sharing timely information, looking out for one another and remaining strong in the belief that we can continue to make this community even safer than the data demonstrates.”

Here is a breakdown of crimes committed in Oak Park in 2015, according to the Village:

  • Thefts, typically crimes of opportunity, remained the single largest category of crimes reported in Oak Park. Some 1,043 thefts were reported in 2014, compared to 1,088 in 2014, a 4-percent decrease.
  • Burglary continued to be the second largest single crime category, with 337 cases reported in 2015, compared to 395 in 2014. In nearly half of the residential burglaries and nearly three-quarters of the garage burglaries entry was via an unlocked door or window.
  • Robberies, a crime police say often affects the public’s perception of safety, continued a downward trend evident over the past several years. Police investigated 65 robberies in 2015, compared to 83 in 2014, 85 in 2013 and 99 in 2012.
  • No homicides occurred in 2015. A homicide has not occurred in Oak Park since 2012.
  • Six criminal sexual assaults were reported in 2015, compared to five in 2014. In five of the 2015 cases, the victim knew the offender. An evidence-based arrest was made in the sixth case.
  • Twenty-one aggravated assault/battery cases were reported in 2015, compared to 15 in 2014. In many of these cases, victims knew their offenders. Other cases involved police officers, hospital emergency workers, traffic altercations and patrons on a train and at a gas station.
  • Four arsons were reported in 2013, the same as in 2014. None were significant.
  • Police responded to 34,529 calls for service in 2015, compared to 32,651 in 2014.

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