Crime continues to drop in Richland

Crime continues to drop in Richland
RICHLAND, Wash. -- The KEPR Crime Tracker is taking a look at the crimes that affect you the most: property crimes, like burglaries and auto thefts.

James and Krista Dykes moved to the Tri-Cities from Spokane a few years ago to start their family.

"West Pasco was an up-and-coming area and a good place to buy our first home," said Krista.

Trying to escape high crime rates in Spokane, the Dykes decided a newer part of the Tri-Cities would suit them. Now that a bit of time has passed, they've changed their minds. They spend most, if not all, of their time in Richland. They hope to move there soon.

"We want to be able to take a walk with our children and take them to the park without worrying about crime in the area, and that's why we come here," Krista said.

Pasco still boasts the best crime rate in the Tri-Cities, but it can be plagued with a different perception.

We pulled the numbers for the crimes that affect you the most and found there is a difference. These include property crimes, not violence.

During the first part of this year, Kennewick had more than 3 times as many home burglaries as Richland had. Pasco had about double.

A few dozen cases are the difference when it comes to car prowls.

For stolen cars, there's a big difference: less than two dozen in Richland during the first quarter of the year; in the two other cities, more than twice as many.

Police say their biggest problem is that which is easiest to fix: unlocked doors, especially when it comes to vehicle prowls and residential burglaries. Those are crimes of opportunity that can sometimes be prevented, freeing up resources to fight other crimes.

Richland hopes to ride that wave into the summer with constant patrols.

"I've seen that in Richland, especially," said Krista.

"They take care of the public places where people kind of congregate to make sure that families can come down," said James.

This makes a difference for families on the move.

Richland police are hoping to get even more boots on the ground if the Benton County crime tax passes.