Car thefts, burglaries dominate latest Shelton crime stats

Photo of Brian Gioiele
Shelton Police

Shelton Police

Contributed photo

SHELTON — Motor vehicle burglaries and thefts remain among the city’s most reported crimes, according to department statistics through August.

Overall, Shelton police filed 772 reports through the first eight months of 2021. In 2020, police filed 1,308 reports, about 200 less than the 1,571 filed in 2019. The total number of incidents cleared by arrest in 2021 stands at 169. Total cleared by arrest in 2020 was 268, compared with 340 in 2019.

“The department is constantly examining the crime statistics — types of crimes, where they are happening — and making adjustments to address those issues,” Police Lt. Robert Kozlowsky said.

Kozlowsky said thefts from vehicles and stolen vehicles — a statewide issue, according to the lieutenant — were a major concern in 2020 and remain one in the present year.

The department stepped up patrols in those areas hardest hit, Kozlowsky said, and communicated with the public about how to best safeguard against thefts.

“The stats only say so much,” Kozlowsky said. “When you look deeper, you see that, in the case of the thefts from vehicles and even some stolen vehicles, the vehicles were left unlocked.”

Kozlowsky said the department has spearheaded a crime prevention program and social media presence to inform residents and offer the community a way to reach out to the police. The department is also participating in the Ring Neighbors app.

To better fight crime in the city, Kozlowsky said the department, which stands at 55 officers after the hiring of three last month, has launched the crime prevention program and increased patrols downtown.

“Overall, Shelton is always among the safest cities, and the police department does a good job addressing issues necessary to deter crime,” Kozlowsky added.

Shelton police ranked ninth — down four spots from 2020 — among the state’s safest cities, according to Safewise, a home security analysis company.

To identify the “safest” cities of 2020, Safewise staff reviewed 2019 FBI crime report statistics — the most recent complete report available at the time of ranking — and population data.

Data shows that the violent crime rate stands at 0.5 per 1,000 residents in the city in 2021, with property crime at 7.4 per 1,000. The property crime numbers rose from 6.9 per 1,000 in 2020 but remained below the 9.5 per 1,000 in 2019. Shelton has a population of 41,287 and a median income of $94,446.

Through August, there have been 62 reported thefts from motor vehicles and 51 motor vehicle thefts. By comparison, there were 87 thefts from motor vehicles in 2020 versus 62 in 2019; and 74 motor vehicle thefts in 2020, versus 22 in 2019.

Disorderly conduct incidents stand at 74 in 2021, compared to the totals of 106 in 2020 and 72 in 2019. Vandalism stands at 48 through August this year, compared to 64 in 2020 and 53 in 2019; and burglaries are at 39 so far in 2021, compared to 72 in 2020 and 61 in 2019.

Police have investigated three reports of rape and six of forcible fondling this year. In 2020, police investigated two reports of rape, down five from the previous year.

Robberies are at 7 in 2021, after nine in 2020 and seven in 2019; simple assault is at 43, after 59 in 2020 and 54 in 2019; and drug crimes are at 24, after 44 in 2020 and 40 in 2019. Shoplifting stands at 45 incidents in 2021, after 58 in 2020 with 67 last year.

The crime stats are available on the police department’s website.

brian.gioiele@hearstmediact.com