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Repeat offenders a focus of 2018 for RCMP

Improvements were made, but Grande Prairie RCMP Superintendent Don McKenna says there’s still work to do. Over the past few years, officers have worked to get crime in the area down. With the help of the city, McKenna says they were able to do that.

“You look at 2014 and 15, we’re number one in the violent crime and crime severity index. The city made a very large expenditure, an investment in the police and the county as well and we’ve certainly seen the results of that. I think Maclean’s had us down at number 14.”

Back in 2015 and 2016, Maclean’s Magazine listed Grande Prairie as the most dangerous city in Canada, based on statistics from the previous years.

As of July 2018, the city’s crime rate ranked 14th. While both the rankings for crime rate and violent crimes went down, McKenna knows people in the area are still concerned about things such as bike and car thefts as well as break-ins.

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He says that most of those crimes are being done by the same people. Because of that, a big focus for officers in 2018 was repeat offenders and trying to get them help.

“As the police that’s what we’re trying to focus our attention on them to get them the services that they need to stop committing the crime. If they’re a drug addict, let’s try to get them into treatment. If they can’t find a job, let’s help them find a job. But if they’re going to violate court ordered cerfews let’s bring them back before the courts.”

Going into 2019, McKenna says officers plan to target things like car thefts and the drug trade.

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