The Anchorage Police Department reported declining violent crime and property crime in 2020. There were 18 homicides in 2020, down by almost half from 2019.
At an Assembly Public Safety Committee meeting on Wednesday, Police Chief Justin Doll said he’s hopeful the department’s anti-violent crime initiatives are having a positive impact.
“Our homicides still remain a mix of sort of street crimes that turned violent and also some homicides involving domestic violence. And so both of those are issues that we continue to look at things that we can do to have an impact.”
According to the 2020 data based on calls for police service, violent crimes like sexual assault and robbery were down from previous years. Theft declined substantially since 2017. Other property crimes such as burglaries and vehicle theft also continued a downward trend. DUIs held fairly steady.
Doll added complaints about long call wait times have decreased since the department added more dispatchers.
In the fall, Doll said he didn’t think the decline in crime was based on the pandemic, but pointed to increased staffing and efforts to work with community organizations as contributing factors.