Crime Concerns in Northeast Fresno

FRESNO, Calif.

Violent crimes are down from last year -- but residents here have seen an increase in other crimes and police are doing their best to prevent it.

The conference room was filled to capacity, as residents living in the Northeast part of Fresno, voiced their concerns over the safety of their neighborhoods.

Chief Jerry Dyer took questions from the group. One of the main issues discussed was the rise in stolen vehicles. Jill Rucker has seen firsthand the criminal activity in her neighborhood.

Rucker said, "They vehicles have been left right in front of my house and that concerns me. Because it makes me believe that person lives in my neighborhood that's perpetrating these crimes."

The Action News Crime Tracker shows 101 stolen vehicles and parts in the northeast side of the city in the past eight weeks.

Another big concern is the string of home burglaries. The Action News Crime Tracker shows 122 home burglaries in the northeast area over the same time period.

Chief Dyer says both statistics are increases from last year. Dyer told residents there are easy ways to avoid being a target like closing your garages and locking up your side door entrances. And most importantly, invest in an alarm.

John Bachman said, "And I think people shouldn't lose sight of the common sense things they can do like stopping the paper, stopping the mail. Imposing a neighbor to pick up stuff that's lying around, whether it's a flyer or whatever."

With the police department cutting back on its budget, officers are looking for ways to best optimize their performance.

Captain Al Maroney said, "It's tough all around. Police, fire, and all the other city departments as well. So we too have to step back and sometimes re-evaluate how we're using our resources and how we can better them."

Councilman Lee Brand hosted Tuesday night's meeting. Other hot topics included cell phone use and red light runners on busy intersections against pedestrians.

Police say they're taking those issues into account as well.

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