Reported Pine Bluff crime down more than 22 percent

Reported crime in Pine Bluff in the first four months of this year was down more than 22 percent, according to the latest figures from the police department.

“That’s a huge number statistically,” Police Chief Jeff Hubanks said during the monthly Coffee with the Chiefs program, sponsored Tuesday by Interested Citizens for Voter Registration at First Presbyterian Church. “I had hoped we would hit 19 or 19-and-a-half percent, but we went well over that.”

The monthly report indicated that there were 457 fewer crimes reported from Jan. 1 to April 3 of this year than there were for the same time period a year ago, resulting in a 22.24 percent decrease.

Looking specifically at April numbers, there were 426 crimes reported, compared to 516 in April 2013, for a 17.44 percent reduction.

There were 18 commercial burglaries last month, one less than a year ago, and residential burglaries dropped from 72 in April 2013 to 57 last month. Reported thefts also declined from 180 in April 2013 to 131 last month, and reported auto thefts were cut in half, from 24 a year ago to 12 last month.

In terms of crimes against persons, rapes and reported rapes increased from four in 2013 to six last month and reported robberies increased from 10 in April 2013 to 14 last month. Aggravated assaults declined slightly, from 36 a year ago to 34 last month, and simple assaults dropped from 169 to 151.

The monthly report showed that the department’s patrol division wrote 628 reports in April, investigated 66 accidents, made 83 misdemeanor arrests, one felony arrest and two juvenile arrests. They also issued 85 traffic citations, 25 warning citations and served 57 warrants.

The department’s traffic division investigated 58 accidents, issued 75 citations as a result of those accidents and issued 237 traffic citations overall last month. They also issued 277 warning citations, served 24 warrants and wrote 29 reports on incidents not related to accidents. They made five misdemeanor arrests.