REPORTING · 29th January 2014
Staff Sergeant Phil Harrison gave a presentation to Kitimat City Council on Monday, January 20th, the monthly policing report for December.
Keeping Council up to date, he said they were still short a member and a sergeant. He hoped to find out who the sergeant would be later this week. He apologized for it taking this long, “But that’s the Federal Government for you.” He joked.
However, there are three members will be starting in February, one with twelve years of service who is being transferred in from Kamloops, a member who will be coming off maternity leave and a cadet who is coming in from Regina.
Going into the Crime Statistics for the year of 2013: “We keep track of about 31 different categories, various crimes. The sad thing is, crime is rising. Every category except for 8,” said Harrison.
Animal Calls, thefts over $5000, Shoplifting, Motor Vehicle Act Tickets, Liquor Offenses, Bylaw, Traffic Bylaws and 911 calls were down. The rest had increased. For example, there were 220 common assaults in 2013. In 2012 there were 96
He expressed he does not know why this is happening to the degree it is, but a large part of it is due to Alcohol and people fighting: “in the bars, on the streets, at parties, by the river… everywhere,” said Harrison.
Councillor Phil Germuth asked if the Staff Sergeant felt the additional staff would be enough to deal with this adequately. Harrison stated there is a GIS member who may take a year to place. However, as Kitimat’s population is expected to increase, he has asked for more. He has a plan which has been submitted to Council. He suggested looking at this plan sooner than later.
Germuth asked how long it would take to put officers in place. He was told it would take time as they have to work with the Municipal, Federal and Provincial level to get funding. He hoped it would take less than a year.
Councillor Edwin Empinado asked if the time the liquor establishments are open were a part of the equation, noting that one closed at 2, and one closed at 4. Harrison replied: “Yes.”
Empinado suggested having Council look into their alcohol policy. “The four o’clock opening for the Hotel, what happens, is the other one closes down and everybody merges down to the Hotel. That’s where a lot of our fights and problems generate from, the Hotel. Not the hotel itself, but around the hotel area, the Enterprise Street, that area. It is because they are open later than everyone else and everyone congregates there,” said Harrison.
There were no further questions. Monaghan thanked him for the report and he sat down.