Violent Crime Down in Oakland for 2017
Oakland is a city that nearly 400,000 people call home. It is host to affordable housing, good weather, and a well-rounded artistic community. It has easy access to downtown San Francisco, and is known for its picturesque landscape and bustling nightlife scene. There is no denying that Oakland is on an upswing. Its once-soaring crime rates have even started to drop. In 2017, commissions of violent crimes decreased by 11 percent based on a five-year average.
While crime has declined in Oakland and law enforcement and government officials have made moves to manage any increases in certain offenses, it is important to remain aware that some crimes still exist. It’s vital that you stay aware of this and stay updated on ways to keep yourself – and the city you live in – safe.
If you’re facing criminal charges in Oakland or a surrounding area, contact a criminal defense attorney from Silver Law Firm at (510) 995-0000 to schedule a free case consultation.
Crime Rates Decrease in Oakland
In the past, Oakland gained a reputation for being one of the more dangerous cities in the Bay Area. Through programs created and implemented by city officials and an active law enforcement presence that offers services and counseling to criminal offenders, crime rates have started to drop significantly.
The Oakland Police Department provided the following crime statistics in their “End of the Year Crime Report” for 2017:
Homicide – 187(a) PC
Pursuant to California Penal Code (PC), 187(a), “murder is the unlawful killing of a human being, or a fetus, with malice aforethought.” In 2016, there were 85 homicides within Oakland city limits. In 2017, however, this offense was only committed 72 times. That is a 15 percent drop in just one year.
Shooting with an Injury – 245(a)(2) PC
If you assault someone and use a firearm to do so, you can be found guilty of an offense per PC 245(a)(2). This crime was committed 331 times in Oakland in 2016, and 277 times in 2017. This indicates a 16 percent decrease.
Shooting into an Occupied Home or Vehicle – 246 PC
PC 246 states that if you shoot a firearm into an inhabited or occupied dwelling, you can be found guilty of a felony. This offense was committed in Oakland 270 times in 2016. In 2017, it was committed only 192 times. This is a whopping 29 percent decrease.
Robbery – 211 PC
If you use force or the threat of force to take someone’s property from them, you may be charged with robbery. In Oakland, robbery was committed 2,991 times in 2016. In 2017, there was a 14 percent drop in commission of the offense for a total of 2,585 robberies that year.
Carjacking – 215(a) PC
If you use force or fear to take someone’s car (either temporarily or permanently) from them, you can be found guilty of a felony under California law. In 2016, there were 245 carjackings in Oakland. In 2017, this crime was documented as only being committed 191 times. This shows that over the course of a year, this crime decreased by 22 percent.
What is the City Doing to Help?
What exactly is causing the drop in so many crimes in Oakland? Mayor Libby Schaff cites “sticking to a solid game plan” in terms of a more all-inclusive approach to combating criminal activity in the city. This approach includes programs such as Ceasefire, a strategy that includes the corresponding work of law enforcement, social agencies, and the community. Ceasefire has three goals: to reduce gang-related shootings and other violent crimes, to decrease recidivism rates, and strengthen relationships between the police department and the community. These goals are achieved by meeting in large groups or one-on-one to complete outreach, and provide services and support for those who are at a high risk of committing a shooting offense or being shot.
Ceasefire, and other programs like it, provide much-needed services for community members who may have gotten into a bad situation and feel like they can turn their life around. By providing the services they do, Ceasefire and other community-based programs are helping to drastically reduce violent crime in Oakland.
Ways to Stay Safe
Despite the crime rates dropping in Oakland, it is always a good idea to stay informed on ways to remain safe and protect yourself. There are some steps you can take to keep your family, property, and neighborhood safe, including:
- Installing a home security system that includes surveillance cameras
- Ensuring the exterior of your home is well-lit
- Communicating with your neighbors
- Keeping valuables locked up
- Starting or joining a neighborhood crime watch group
- Reporting any and all suspicious activity to the police
Talk to an Oakland Criminal Defense Lawyer
Everyone wants to keep their neighborhoods safe, but sometimes an attempt to protect one’s home can lead to a devastating mistake or mix-up. If you find yourself in a legal situation where you need a criminal defense lawyer, attorney Elliot Silver is here to help. He can review your situation and prepare a solid defense to get you the best possible outcome.
For a free consultation, call Silver Law Firm at (510) 995-0000 or use our online form.