Annual Police Department review shows year -over-year improvement keeps San Diego one of America's safest cities.
In front of the San Diego Police Department Headquarters, Mayor Kevin L. Faulconer, Police Chief Shelley Zimmerman and Councilmember and public safety committee chair Chris Cate discussed how the department’s community-focused approach has contributed to San Diego’s violent crime rate dropping to the lowest level in four decades.
“Our top priority is keeping San Diegans safe and this report shows that the efforts of our police officers have been very effective,” Mayor Faulconer said. “San Diego’s crime rate remains low because of our continued emphasis on collaboration between our community and police. Together, we are keeping our city safe for all San Diegans.”
Overall crime in San Diego decreased by 2.3 percent in 2016 from 2015, with violent crime decreasing 4.5 percent.
While similarly-sized cities such as Phoenix, San Antonio, Dallas and Los Angeles each have higher violent crime rates, only about four out of 1,000 residents were victims of violent crimes in San Diego.
“Keeping San Diego one of the safest big cities in the United States doesn’t happen by accident.
It is accomplished by the hard work and bravery of our police officers, professional civilian staff, volunteers, law enforcement partners and our community members who collaborate with us every day to reduce crime and improve our collective quality of life,” said Police Chief Shelley Zimmerman. “We are confident that by working together, we can achieve more.”
San Diego police embrace a community policing philosophy that results in thousands of outreach activities each year that include ride-alongs, attending community meetings and participating in neighborhood events.
“This is just the beginning. There is still work to be done and my commitment as the Chair of Public Safety and Livable Neighborhoods Committee will be to work every day on strengthening public safety,” Councilmember Cate said.
Additionally, over the last several years, at the direction of Mayor Faulconer with support of the City Council, SDPD has equipped all officers in the field with body-worn cameras that have led to a 36 percent decrease in citizen complaints and allegations since 2013.
The department is also recognized as a leader in officer training with a focus on the concepts of de-escalation, non-biased policing, community policing and diversity.