The Crime Statistics

Moderator: Jim DeVito

Do the details in the FBI crime report matter to you?

Poll ended at Tue Nov 06, 2007 4:42 pm

yes
7
41%
no
10
59%
 
Total votes: 17
Shawn Juris

The Crime Statistics

Postby Shawn Juris » Wed Oct 31, 2007 4:42 pm

I encourage the others that have stated that there is more to the story on crime to contribute their empirical evidence. I've been asking for weeks now for anything other than perception and anecdotes, maybe now that the election is just around the corner something will be provided. CRIS reports, historical analysis of complaints, convictions, arrests, court filings, anything that will help to give us as observers a clearer picture of what the reality of crime in our town is.
My perception is that while the probability of being a victim is still low it is trending in a direction that does not fit the image of Lakewood. What I've gathered from some folks is that the total numbers of violent crime and property crime are still the relatively the same and therefore, we must be just as safe as years past. Yet they ignore the details of the crimes committed. To draw an comparison it seems like if the surgeon general said Americans are as healthy as ever because the total number of sicknesses reported were the same but ignored that those individual illnesses had become more severe.
Contrary to those that scoff at such analysis and label it as a chicken little complex, I find it necessary to be honest with ourselves if we expect anything to improve. Remaining silent about this for marketing reasons seems like propaganda by omission and can cause damage to the good will of those who end up feeling they were sold a bill of goods. We as consumers/voters/residents deserve full disclosure and so do those that are future consumers/voters/residents.
Attached is a breakdown which is from the FBI reports. These numbers are readily available online and the only additions are the comparisons in order to make clear increases or decreases across different periods of time. The analysis is subject to the readers viewpoint. Some may say that a 10% increase is acceptable, others may say that the important issue is that we have improved from last year, still others may view it from a little futher away and notice that some areas are steadily changing over the years.
These reports in particular are being discussed in the mayoral campaign and I think it's important if voters are to be educated on the topic to see what the details are on this issue.


sharon kinsella
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Postby sharon kinsella » Wed Oct 31, 2007 5:47 pm

Shawn - I'm glad you posted the fbi stats.

I think that is best - let people look at the numbers and decide for themselves.


"When I dare to be powerful -- to use my strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid." - Audre Lorde
Stephen Eisel
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Joined: Fri Jan 26, 2007 9:36 pm

Postby Stephen Eisel » Wed Oct 31, 2007 6:44 pm

Robbery, burglaries, auto theft and arson all trended above average in 2006 (averaging the stats provided from 1999-2006 for each crime). Murder was slightly above average but only by .125


Kenneth Warren
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Postby Kenneth Warren » Wed Oct 31, 2007 8:02 pm

Nice work Shawn. Perhaps you can award Ms. Kinsella an FBI insignia cut-out from Mr. Fitzgerald’s glossy campaign literature ( “I'm glad you posted the fbi stats.//I think that is best - let people look at the numbers and decide for themselves.â€Â


Gary Rice
Posts: 1571
Joined: Wed Aug 23, 2006 9:59 pm
Location: Lakewood

Postby Gary Rice » Wed Oct 31, 2007 9:20 pm

Ken,

I freely admit that I favor Tom George's reelection.

Having said and written that statement a few times, I still want to be as fair as possible with my postings.

Especially with Ed, who has always been respectful with me.

And also, of course, with you; whom I value so highly as a friend, and as a drummer! :D

Civility is important to me, even as the 'Deck seems to be increasingly awash in stridency.

As any private citizen can, I've checked the multi-year crime stats available, and they just plain do not, to me, support the type of significant concerns that some have said are happening in our city. (Although it would be fair to say that ANY crime is a concern)

If I DID see significant concerns, neither Tom, nor anyone else could make me say otherwise. That's not the kind of banjo player I am. :lol:

You seem to be raising some pretty serious questions here, but again, I have not seen either the concrete empirical data, or the evidence, to support some of the points that you, or a few others, have raised.

These are powerful (and to me, disturbing) words that you are using, by the way.

In the absence of factual data APPLYING TO LAKEWOOD, and with due and sincere respect for your friendship and opinions, I just think that so many of these concerns seem to me to simply be without empirical foundation.

If there are any stats that you, or anyone can provide to support alarming crime concerns, I would certainly like to be made aware of them.

Best Always,

Gary


Kenneth Warren
Posts: 489
Joined: Sat Mar 26, 2005 7:17 pm

Postby Kenneth Warren » Wed Oct 31, 2007 10:03 pm

Gary:

I believe I am registering a valid critical point: FBI stats do not account for crimes below the felony level.

The literature of criminology is quite full of studies that raise critical questions about data gathering methodology and socio-economic and political conditions that inform such action.

I need context to interpret numbers generated on the basis on considerable complexity.

Crime stats are being used and contested in a political campaign, which complicates the business of our coming to understand the matter critically.

I believe the critical context and concerns raised in my post cannot be dismissed out of hand by relying solely on a review of FBI stats.

As you may recall, I have believed this and posted to this effect well before these issues were raised in the campaign.

You are free to consider the FBI stats as determinant of the empirical foundation that yields best insight into conditions in the city. I see the FBI stats as only one lens, built on an empirical foundation that does not capture data related to elements raised in my post and concerns raised by some citizens.

Though we see this matter differently, I remain your friend and look forward to playing music with you again.

Kenneth Warren


Gary Rice
Posts: 1571
Joined: Wed Aug 23, 2006 9:59 pm
Location: Lakewood

Postby Gary Rice » Wed Oct 31, 2007 10:35 pm

Ken,

Thank you for your response, my friend.

For the record, I would concur with you that there are many aspects to crime in Lakewood that will need to be continually assessed.

I would also agree that context does assist interpretation of data at times, but I think what I am looking for, are the particulars for that data. You seem to me, to be offering a well thought out and concluded suppositional analysis, but it's the fundamental premise that I have to question, since some of the types of incidents that you seem to allude to, are apparently not easily found on the reported radar screen.

I believe that I know your feelings regarding these concerns, and yes, I do know that you posted them well before the election. That is an important point in favor of your integrity, and I hope that others will realize this, as well.

I think that both of us are looking for more data.

My hope is, (going back to context) that people understand that we are (at least primarily) arguing principles of evidence, rather than politics between ourselves. Whether Tom or Ed become our next mayor, I sincerely hope that you and I have modeled the "civic discourse factor" here.

Again, thanks for your response. We may have to agree to disagree on this one, unless more hard data comes out to support your concerns.

Best,

Gary


Kenneth Warren
Posts: 489
Joined: Sat Mar 26, 2005 7:17 pm

Postby Kenneth Warren » Wed Oct 31, 2007 10:44 pm

Gary:

I would bet that if implemented properly Citi-stat could yield data on the hot spots and quality of life fields creating some turbulence in perceptions about neighborhood life.

Kenneth Warren


Gary Rice
Posts: 1571
Joined: Wed Aug 23, 2006 9:59 pm
Location: Lakewood

Postby Gary Rice » Wed Oct 31, 2007 10:48 pm

Ken,

You may well be right about that.

Going back to the field of education however, I've seen far too many cases where pencil-pushing bottom-liners got in the way of real-life needs.

Gotta build in some flexibility too, I suppose.


Ed FitzGerald
Posts: 66
Joined: Mon Jul 11, 2005 11:14 am

Postby Ed FitzGerald » Thu Nov 01, 2007 12:08 am

Ken-

To your first question: What about juvenile crime statistics?

This question underscores the limitations of FBI statistics, because adjudications of juvenile delinquency are not a component of FBI stats, just as misdemeanors and miscellaneous crimes are not. As I have argued in person with the mayor several times, the FBI statistics are not, and never have been, intended to be a barometer of the quality of life in a neighborhood. They measure something, but not everything.

Here are links to two pdfs from Cuyahoga County Juvenile Court for the years 2006 and 2005. I have a pending request for earlier years, but haven't received a response yet.

http://juvenile.cuyahogacounty.us/annua ... table4.pdf

http://juvenile.cuyahogacounty.us/pdf/a ... able04.pdf

Before I get assailed, I'm not trying to create more fodder for this campaign. This kind of data needs to be considered by the next Public Safety Director, no matter who that person is, as well as by the rest of the community.

If anyone already has data from earlier years, please post it.


Ed FitzGerald
Shawn Juris

Postby Shawn Juris » Mon Nov 05, 2007 12:44 pm

I'm puzzled. I keep seeing the Mayor George commercial talking about phony FBI reports. I don't get it. How can you spin these numbers to claim that crime is down in all major categories as campaign flyers from Mayor George have said? I'm not really sure what phoney numbers that the old guy in the commercial is referring to. Maybe he's just reading his line and didn't ask for evidence.



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