(Here's a map of the crime zones for the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station .)
While Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station officials are maintaining near record-low 2011 crime rates, the Saugus zone has seen a drastic drop in reported crimes, according to the Sheriff’s Station’s Nixle reports.
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“We’re continuing to see (Part-I crimes) dropping,” said Deputy Mark Manskar, Saugus zone leader for the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station’s Crime Prevention Unit.
“I think we had four (Part-I crimes) this week -- and that’s on the high end,” he said. “I’ve been averaging around one to two per week.”
At this point last year, there were 300 reported Part-I crimes in the Saugus area, and as of last week, there were only 139.
Part-I crimes include everything from murder to the less-serious property crimes, such as larcenies and petty thefts.
Even property crimes, which have risen countywide, have seen a drop-off in Saugus, according to the numbers.
Property crimes are down 52.8 percent in the Saugus zone, Manskar said, and robberies are down from 12 incidents at this point in 2012 to just two this year in the same area.
The numbers come from a computerized system utilized countywide by the Sheriff’s Department.
“I attribute it to proactive deputies, citizens being more alert, and our specialized teams that we have, with our J-Team, (Crime Impact) Team, the (Special Assignment Team) and the CPU,” Manskar said.
The system creates reports on crime data sorted by type and address, which is then analyzed by station officials on a weekly basis.
Station officials, detectives and deputies get together on a weekly basis to analyze the numbers, and also put out reports that are available at the Sheriff’s Station’s Nixle site .
“The CPU has helped create a program whereby each deputy is assigned an area within the Santa Clarita Valley,” said Deputy Josh Dubin of the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station. “And residents have a specific person they can go to if they have an issue or a question about local crime.”
Probably the biggest help, Manskar said, is from residents who are contacting the Sheriff’s Station more frequently, and reporting suspicious activity.
There were eight zones created for the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station, which were divided amongst the deputies previously determined “reporting districts,” which created along historical lines -- i.e. Valencia, Saugus, Newhall, etc., said Sheriff’s Station Capt. Paul Becker.
“We’ve had a big increase in the reported incidents where we’ve had citizens report suspicious things and then we’ve gone out there and made an arrest,” Manskar said.
“And we also have some really good proactive deputies working in the area,” he added. “We ID crime trends and go out there and arrest those responsible.”
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