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Violent Crime Increases In Jamestown By 31 Percent

Violent crime in Jamestown was 31% higher in 2020 than it was in 2019.

That number is shocking, because it didn’t seem like crime was such a large problem last year in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Let that be a credit to the Jamestown Police Department, which provided such a veneer of safety that the increase in violent crime didn’t spill into many Jamestown neighborhoods. Consider that one final gift from Harry Snellings, former Jamestown police chief, and the steady hand provided by new chief Timothy Jackson during his several-month stint as interim police chief.

It is troubling that violent crime has reached a six-year high, though, as it is a sign that the city is locked in a stalemate with the scourge of poverty and drug abuse that leads to such violent crime. All too often violent crime is between people who know each other or people who are targeted for a specific reason.

A 2017 Bureau of Justice report found 21% of people sentenced in state prisons and local jails committed crimes for drugs or money for drugs. Almost 40% of people locked up for property crimes and 14% of those jailed for violent crimes said they committed their most serious offense for drug-related reasons.

Such statistics, applied locally, indicate that until Jamestown gets its drug and poverty problems under better control, this type of crime report will be the norm.

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