HAMPTON, Va. (WAVY) — The mid year crime numbers for the City of Hampton are in.
On Wednesday, Police Chief Terry Sult addressed city council. The numbers were mixed.
There was the good news. Violent crime is down, so are homicides and robberies.
“When you look at the violent crime, we’re the third safest in the seven cities,” said Chief Sult.
Sexual assault numbers on the other hand were up 66 percent. According to the chief, they expect these numbers to go down as the reports are investigated.
Aggravated assault numbers were also up more than 5 percent.
The most significant problem, according to the police chief, is the use of firearms.
“Whether it’s shootings, weapons violations, carrying weapons illegally, using weapons to solve arguments and that sort of thing is still one of our biggest issues and priorities,” explained Sult.
Then the chief turned the floor to Corporal Stalnaker who addressed the city’s ongoing issue with gangs and gang violence. Stalnaker said they’ve seen an increase in females involved in gang violence in recent years. One reason he gave was girls dating guys from rival gangs, which he says has caused some problems.
The corporal also said when it comes to dealing with gang violence it’s difficult to get people to cooperate with law enforcement, which makes it difficult to hold criminals accountable.
“They decide they don’t want to cooperate with law enforcement and they chose to try to take matters into their own hands,” said Stalnaker. He said people taking matters into their own hands often leads to violence.