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Independent Voice

Dixon Police Department Reports Good News

Mar 27, 2024 10:46AM ● By Angela Underwood, photos by Angela Underwood
Criminal Analyst Cristina Garcia and Dixon Police Chief Robert Thompson present the Dixon City Council the 2023 Annual Report.

DIXON, CA (MPG) - A one-percent decrease in overall crime and a quicker response time to the scene assure the Dixon Police Department officers are doing their job well. 

Police Chief Robert Thompson presented the Dixon Police Department Annual 2023 Report to the mayor and council members on March 19. The report details a comprehensive snapshot of the department's community outreach efforts, crime statistics, productivity, and transparency.

Chief Thompson detailed the breakdown of the law enforcement team and how the organization is set up to deliver community service, including specialty departments like canine and school resources officers.

"The backbone of the police department, and any police department, which is its field operation or patrol function that is the solid obligation and primary responsibility is that when someone calls the police, someone shows up," Chief Johnson said.

And that response time is quicker than last year, according to Christina Garcia, police services analyst, showing officer-initiated calls for service include traffic enforcement stops, follow-up investigations, suspicious vehicle and person checks, citizen assists, and safety and welfare checks.

Of the 1,844 cases for crime and incident reports in 2023, the average response time was 5:22.

Dixon Police Department 2023

 Dixon Police Department Patrol Statistics for 2023 on incident type.

"This is actually a decrease in time of 26 seconds from last year," Garcia said, noting the City of Dixon Police Department retrieves their data from the National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS) before reporting it to the Department of Justice.

NIBRS offers a more granular analysis of crime types and variations, including criminal offenses ranging from animal cruelty, aggravated assault, burglary, fraud, kidnapping, larceny, motor vehicle theft, sex offenses, and weapons violations.

Garcia said citywide crime decreased by 1% compared to 2022, with contributing factors including lower property damage and burglary. However, retail theft, stolen bicycles and motor vehicle parts, and drug use increased. When it comes to motor vehicle stops, officers must report why they pulled a citizen over, according to Garcia.

"The number one reason for any stops occurring within here in the city is because it's due to a traffic violation, and it's very minimal that they get stopped for being a suspect," Garcia said.

The annual report cites California's 2015 Racial and Identity Profile Act while noting in 2021, there was an average of 155 stops a month with the perceived race of white being the highest at 42%. Following is the Hispanic community at 40% and Black/African American at 11%.

Garcia said officers must also report the perceived gender of the person.

"On average, we have 99 males versus 56 females that are stopped every month," Garcia said.

The analysis also showed more driving under the influence and probation violation arrests. The cumulative arrests increased the overall rate by 7% compared to 2022, with a 6% percent change in adults and 25% in juveniles.

Since the last time the chief presented a report, he said the police department took the initiative to create a transparency portal, where the public is given a lot of information not required by law to report, including the frequency of crime duration and incident types.

Chief Thompson said that in his nearly seven-year tenure with the department, "crime rates have remained incredibly consistent" in the year-to-year analysis, but "more importantly, the city has experienced significant expansion and population in those seven years, and we have not seen an increase in violent crime."

According to the chief, this year's annual report comes sooner than later, who said the department did a "much better job," submitting now rather than in summer and posting it on the department website for public view.

"The website is much more accurate, not quite real-time, but certainly more than annually updated with information, and we encourage the community to go with that," Chief Thompson said. There is a big button that says transparency portal, and it will take you to all those documents."

While the serious data brought good news for Dixon residents, in jest, Chief Johnson noted what is "overwhelmingly disconcerting to him" about the report is the picture on it showing him with brown hair as he stood at the podium with peppered grey.