Recent Lower Mainland shootings not a sign that crime is out of control
Judging from what you're hearing on radio and seeing on television newscasts these days, there appears to be a serious crime wave underway in the Lower Mainland.
Today, Port Moody police revealed that a 32-year-old man known to police is dead after being shot in the Glenayre neighbourhood.
Yesterday, the Integrated Homicide Team revealed that Yuan Xi Tang, 25, has been charged with first-degree murder in the death of his mother, Lianjie Guo, who was visiting the Lower Mainland from her native China.
The Integrated Homicide Investigation Team also reported yesterday that Delta resident Jagdip Johal was shot dead in broad daylight on King George Boulevard in Surrey.
If that wasn't bad enough, the Vancouver Police Department appealed for the public's help after a homeless man was apparently beaten while sleeping under West Georgia Street near Lost Lagoon. He suffered a fractured skull.
These horrific incidents can leave the impression that crime is out of control.
In fact, police-reported violent crime fell four percent in Canada in 2011. It was the fifth straight annual reduction, according to a Statistics Canada report released in July.
In metropolitan Vancouver, police-reported violent crime was down nine percent last year over the previous year.
Police-reported nonviolent crime fell seven percent in Canada in 2011, marking the eighth consecutive drop. The rate of break-ins was 42 percent below the figure from a decade ago.
These figures are no consolation to the friends and families of the victims of the recent attacks. But they do offer context to those who might be feeling quite alarmed by what they're seeing on the evening news.