North Battleford has again been humbled by the annual Crime Severity Index numbers.
Numbers for 2013 were released Wednesday by Statistics Canada, and not only did North Battleford finish first in Canada on the CSI index for cities over 10,000 again for the fifth year in a row, but the city also topped the Violent Crime Severity Index.
The numbers are as follows: on the Crime Severity Index, North Battleford's score was 323.88. For the national Violent Crime Severity Index, it was 293.84. And on the Non-Violent Crime Severity Index, it was 334.13.
The cities of Thompson, Man., Yellowknife NWT, and Williams Lake, B.C. trailed behind in the survey of Crime Severity Index Values for 304 police servicing communities over 10,000 population across Canada.
Among the factors leading to the bad score for 2013 were some violent incidents including a second-degree murder in September.
That receives a weight of 7554.94 in the calculation of the city's Violent CSI value. There were also two attempted murders in 2013, both of which are scored at 1733.14 each.
However, those incidents still make up a very small portion of the final number. In a release, Insp. John Sutherland of Battlefords RCMP detachment noted that the main offences contributing to North Battleford's overall CSI include mischief, breaking and entering, cocaine trafficking, robbery and theft.
Offences contributing to the violent CSI remain relatively the same with the top five being: robbery, assault, assault with a weapon or causing bodily harm, murder (second degree, one incident) and aggravated assault. Meanwhile, the top five offences contributing to the non-violent CSI include: mischief, breaking and entering, cocaine trafficking, theft $5,000 or under and fraud.
The categories of mischief and breaking and entering accounted for almost half of the non-violent CSI and more than 30 per cent of the overall CSI, according to the RCMP. Sutherland also noted another factor impacting the non-violent CSI was disturbing the peace.
"This is due to the frequency of this type of complaint, in 2013 North Battleford members responded to more than 1,000 disturbing the peace complaints, which is a six per cent reduction from 2012," said Sutherland in a release.
If there is any good news in the numbers, it is that the CSI for North Battleford is down six per cent from a year earlier. Last year's CSI score for North Battleford was 352.39.
Also cited were significant declines in some crime categories, one of those being cocaine trafficking. This category dropped from 142 offences in 2012 to 70 in 2013, according to the RCMP release.
However, crime has also been dropping across Canada, which was no help to North Battleford in improving its ranking.
There have also been steady declines posted in the 2014 numbers so far, but North Battleford will have to wait another year to see if it has any impact on its CSI ranking.
Further details on the numbers will be in next week's News-Optimist.