At the February 23 Brentwood City Council meeting, the Brentwood Police Department presented its 2020 Performance Report which shows crime is down mostly due to COVID-19 pandemic and people being home.
Chief Tom Hansen reported the department staffing includes 71 officers. Of that, 6 are detectives, 2 K9 officers, 3 motorcycle officers, 3 school resource officers, a collateral SWAT team and crisis negotiation team. They also have 36 civilian support staff which includes community service officers, records division, dispatch center, administration and part time assistants.
Chief highlighted the purpose of the report was for accountability, transparency and assessment of staffing needs while highlighting they were looking at performance categories which included response times, incidents of crime and crime rate, workload and clearance rates.
According to Hansen, the 2020 response times for Priority 1 Calls (emergency) increased by 3-seconds to 4:28 minutes—in 2019, it was 4:25 minutes. Meanwhile Priority 2 Calls decreased by 7 seconds to 5:37 minutes—in 2019, it was 5:44 minutes.
“This was good given our population increase,” stated Hansen who further noted that prior to opening their own dispatch center, calls sat on the board for 2:51 minutes in 2016 and in 2020 they were on the board for just 41 seconds. “I am really proud of our dispatchers for that.”
PART 1 Crime: Murder, Rape, Robbery, Arson, Assault, Burglary, Theft & Auto Theft
Hansen reported that Violent crime decreased by 11.5% with a total of 494 incidents in 2020 which is 64 less than in 2019.
He did preface the report calling it an “anomaly” because they went into COVID-19 in March so they would be “seeing some weird numbers” with people staying home but expected it to even out in 2021.
Property Crime Decreased by 3.2%.
Hansen correlated the reduction in residential burglaries to people being home while non-residential burglaries increased by people not being at work.
In total, PART 1 Crimes were down 5.7% to 1,786 total incidents in 2020 versus 1,893 in 2019. Meanwhile, residents have a 22 in 1,000 chance to be a victim of a Part 1 crime—the 10-year average, however, is 30.65.
|Calls for Service||32,767||32,200||-567|
Hansen noted that collisions were down 144 incidents which was the biggest drop he had ever seen which was likely attributed to less cars on the roadway.
Hansen reminded the council that in 2019, they had a traffic campaign “Obey the Sign or Pay the Fine” which resulted in the officers writing a lot of traffic tickets.
Overall, Hansen said he was pleased with their response times saying the department was doing a good job but highlighted the crime rate was down but was “weird’ due to COVID-19 impacts which resulted in fewer contacts.
Hansen closed by thanking both the city manager for his leadership and the city council for supporting the police department by providing the tools they need to fight crime while also recently approving the 5th beat which is resulting in the hiring of 5 new officers–currently, the department operates in a 4-beat system.
“That 5th beat shows my police department and the men and women of the police department that their leaders have their backs, and we are going to continue to go out there and work hard and make this the safest city we can and not tolerate crime but do it right and not be afraid to look at trending new ways of policing because we are never going to close our minds to that,” stated Hansen. “We will continue to look at best practices and implement that if we see fit.”