A reduction in most crimes so far this year in Naperville could be the one good thing attributable to the COVID-19 pandemic, authorities said.
The Naperville Police Department on Tuesday released mid-year crime figures that show decreases compared to last year’s midpoint totals in both Part I crimes, which are considered serious and violent, and lesser Part II crimes.
For the Part II category, which includes issues such as drug crimes, financial crimes, disorderly conduct, interference with public officers, offenses involving children, sex offenses and motor vehicle offenses, police said in a news release, “Our department believes COVID-19 has played a factor in this reduction.”
Part II crimes decreased 17% from the first six months of 2019 to the first six months of 2020, statistics show. The total drop includes a 93% decrease in drug paraphernalia offenses (six so far this year compared with 81 during the first half of last year); a 79% decrease in interfering with public officers (11, down from 53); and a 34% decrease in motor vehicle offenses (124 this year, down from 188).
Police said more people working from home has meant fewer drivers on the roads, leading to fewer vehicle-related offenses. Similarly, police said, less social contact because of people sheltering in place has created fewer opportunities for financial crimes such as identity theft, deception and forgery, which decreased 18% from last year.
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