By Michael Coughlin Jr.
With 2022 wrapping up, representatives from the Boston Police Department (BPD), Captain Steven Sweeney, and Sargent Matthew Hogardt revealed that part-one crimes have dropped by 6% year-to-date district-wide.
The statistics report encompassed the crimes committed from the beginning of the year through the end of October and was disclosed during the monthly East Berkeley Street Neighborhood Association (EBNA) meeting on November 1.
Some of the most significant decreases from this time last year came in rape and attempted sexual assault cases which saw a 52% drop. Residential burglaries and motor vehicle larceny also saw nice drops of 36% and 16%, respectively.
While part-one crimes decreased overall, there were still some upticks in crimes, such as non-domestic aggravated assaults, up 12%. However, Sweeney did not see the rise as something to panic about.
He cited that much of the increase can be attributed to fights and stabbings in the Mass and Cass area.
“It’s not like we have people being assaulted all over the district; they’re kind of clustered in that area … there’s no big clusters of people being assaulted walking home from work and stuff like that. They’re usually centered around certain locations,” said Sweeney.
Eventually, Hogardt delivered some exciting news to the residents in and around the EBNA area – every part-one crime year-to-date in the neighborhood dropped except for aggravated assaults. However, even with the slight increase in aggravated assaults, one has not been reported since July.
Although there is a lot to be happy about, Hogardt reminded residents to stay vigilant despite the decrease in crime. He stressed the importance of not leaving bikes or mopeds outside to fend off larceny.
“One thing we try to tell everybody is bikes are such a hot commodity. If you can avoid leaving your bike – even if it is locked up – if you could avoid leaving it outside, do everything you can to bring it inside,” said Hogardt.
“People think they are safe with the chains – some of these guys walk around with like power tools, and they’ll just cut them off in seconds.”
Even buildings with designated bike rooms in garages are not that safe unless the room itself is locked, according to Hogardt.
“I don’t want to say it’s a false sense of security but don’t think just because it’s in that room; it’s completely secure,” he said.
Moreover, Hogardt emphasized steps to prevent package theft with the holidays rapidly approaching.
“If you have to have things delivered to your house, we try to tell people if you are not going to be home, do your best to maybe work with a neighbor or a family member and say, listen, the package is coming this date I am not going to be home can you maybe grab it for me,” said Hogardt.
He also mentioned that if you order with Amazon, they offer a service where packages can be delivered to Whole Foods and picked up. There are also Amazon-specific lockers throughout the city where packages can be delivered and retrieved.
Overall, both Sweeney and Hogardt seemed delighted with the numbers and indicated that residents could reach out to them with questions or concerns.
“Good numbers, and you know if anyone has feedback or any issues you’re seeing in the neighborhood or you’re hearing about, please reach out to us,” said Sweeney.