White Rock RCMP Staff. Sgt. Kale Pauls said he’s pleased the community has the confidence to call police when they feel threatened or harassed. (Contributed photo)

White Rock RCMP Staff. Sgt. Kale Pauls said he’s pleased the community has the confidence to call police when they feel threatened or harassed. (Contributed photo)

White Rock RCMP reports decrease in assaults, increase in threats in 2020

Uttering threats and criminal harassment calls increased by more than 60 per cent

While property crimes and assaults were down in White Rock last year, police received an increased number of calls for service relating to criminal harassment and uttering threats.

White Rock RCMP released its 2020 annual report last week, which compares crime statistics to the previous year.

Last year, property crime decreased by 4.5 per cent, and assaults decreased by 10 per cent compared to 2019. During the same period, incidents of criminal harassment increased by 62 per cent, and complaints involving uttering threats increased by 69 per cent.

“I am pleased that the community has the confidence to call us when they feel threatened or harassed,” Staff Sgt. Kale Pauls told Peace Arch News via email. “In many of these incidents we educate, mediate, or initiate criminal proceeding depending on the nature of the report and the direction wanted by the victim.”

The increase in uttering threats and harassment calls were predominately associated to an increase in neighbour, landlord/tenant, and roommate incidents where a verbal threat was made or a series of harassing behaviours were reported.

The report notes that there is not enough information to conclude that COVID-19 stressors played a role in the increase of calls for service relating to harassment and threats.

RELATED: ‘Busy summer’ for White Rock RCMP traffic enforcement

However, COVID-19 did lead to an increased workload for officers.

City of White Rock Bylaw officers were the primary agency that conducted business checks and public health order education. However, RCMP officers responded to complaints after hours and on weekends.

The RCMP attended 92 calls with a COVID-19 component, undertook 14 investigations directly related to COVID-19 Related Measures Act (RMA) and seven Quarantine Act investigations.

“Education was the first step of any PHO contravention with enforcement action as a last resort. No COVID-19 RMA tickets were issued by the White Rock RCMP in 2020,” the report notes.

As far as the 10 per cent decrease in assault-based calls, Pauls said police are actively working towards increasing the reports received by police.

“Specifically sexual assaults and intimate partner violence,” Pauls said, adding that those crimes are “severely” under-reported across Canada.

“An increase in reports won’t be indicative of an increase in actual incidents, an increase in reports is a sign of the confidence that victims have in seeking the support of police and of their confidence in the justice system,” Pauls said.

“I want to ensure that victims know we are here to provide support on crimes that impact us all directly and indirectly.”

In total, police in White Rock responded to 6,905 calls for service in 2020. Among those calls, abandoned 911 calls or false-alarm calls counted for 1,128.

Other frequent calls to 911 included disturbances (519), suspicious person/trespassing (415), bylaw complaints (411) and well-being checks (396).

The most common property-crime offences included theft from vehicle (185), mischief to property (161), and theft of items such as wallets, phones, licence plates (101).

There were 39 residential break-and-enters and 12 commercial break-and-enters.

During the year, White Rock RCMP was involved in 2,006 police-motorist interactions that resulted in a violation ticket, notice and order, written warning, or other Motor Vehicle Act document. The 2,006 interactions were not counted as calls for service.



aaron.hinks@peacearchnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

crime ratePoliceRCMP

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Peace Arch Hospital Foundation executive director Stephanie Beck speaks at a 2017 groundbreaking ceremony. In March 2020, she announced the Rapid Response Grant Program, aimed at providing financial assistance during the pandemic. (File photo)
Peace Arch Hospital Foundation launches youth program

Youth in Action designed for students who want to make an impact in their community

The RCMP logo is seen outside Royal Canadian Mounted Police “E” Division Headquarters, in Surrey, B.C., on April 13, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Surrey RCMP asking for dash-cam video of ‘suspicious incident’

Incident involves a newer model Toyota Rav 4 SUV

Surrey RCMP are investigating a “serious” collision near Cloverdale Saturday evening. (Curtis Kreklau photo)
Surrey RCMP investigating ‘serious’ collision in Cloverdale

Witness says vehicle collided with utility pole at approximately 9:30 p.m.

Elvira D’Angelo, 92, waits to receive her COVID-19 vaccination shot at a clinic in Montreal, Sunday, March 7, 2021, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in Canada and around the world. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
‘It’s been a good week’: Tam hopeful on vaccines as pandemic anniversary nears

Tam says the addition of two new vaccines will help Canadians get immunized faster

The Kimber family of Boston Bar lost their home in a fire. Blaine Kimber’s daughter created a fundraiser to help rebuild the home with the goal of $100,000. (Screenshot/GoFundMe)
Fundraiser created for Boston Bar family that lost everything in weekend fire

Witnesses say the Kimber family escaped the fire without injury, but their home is a total loss

(The Canadian Press)
‘Worse than Sept. 11, SARS and financial crisis combined’: Tourism industry in crisis

Travel services saw the biggest drop in active businesses with 31 per cent fewer firms operating

Pictures and notes in from friends and classmates make up a memorial in support and memory of Aubrey Berry, 4, and her sister Chloe, 6, during a vigil held at Willows Beach in Oak Bay, B.C., on December 30, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Mother of slain daughters supports recent changes to Canada’s Divorce Act

Sarah Cotton-Elliott said she believed her children took a back seat to arranging equal parenting

Victoria man Brett Andersen is asking for people’s help to secure him one of eight free tickets to the moon. (Screenshot/@brettandersen Instagram)
Victoria man wants your help securing a free ticket to the moon

Japanese billionaire offering eight people a trip to the moon

The Conservation Officers Service is warning aquarium users after invasive and potentially destructive mussels were found in moss balls from a pet store. (BC Conservation Officers Service/Facebook)
Aquarium users in B.C. warned after invasive mussels found at pet store

Conservation officers were told the mussels were found in a moss ball from a Terrace pet store.

Hockey hall-of-fame legend Wayne Gretzky, right, watches the casket of his father, Walter Gretzky, as it is carried from the church during a funeral service in Brantford, Ont., Saturday, March 6, 2021. HE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Walter Gretzky remembered as a man with a ‘heart of gold’ at funeral

The famous hockey father died Thursday at age 82 after battling Parkinson’s disease

The family of injured Willoughby resident Ronald Gerald Jesso is hoping someone saw something that will help solve the mystery of how he came to be so badly hurt on the morning of Feb. 22. Jesso is still in hospital. (Jesso family/Special to Langley Advance Times)
An appeal to help solve the mystery of an injured Langley man

Family of Ronald Gerald Jesso asks witnesses to come forward

Most Read