The Rock Island Police Department is targeting certain areas in the city to fight crime. But public perception of crime in the city is very different from reality.
"We're constantly trying to reduce the citizens' fear of crime."
A fear, according to the police chief, that is often unwarranted. Chief Jeffrey Venhuizen explains, "A lot of the time, the citizen's fear of crime exceeds what the crime numbers actually are."
So what are the actual crime numbers?
From January to September of this year, there were 265 reports of theft, 127 burglaries, 31 accounts of battery, 26 assaults, and one homicide.
We pinpointed where crime specifically happens and mapped everything out:
The majority of crime happens in the downtown area and business districts rather than on residential property. "There's no doubt that Rock Island, like any other city, has its crime challenges. But that's something that we're constantly trying to improve upon," says Chief Venhuizen.
The Chief hopes his department's new building will do exactly that. And so does Rock Island's mayor. "Police protection is a prime service the city of Rock Island wants to provide. We want to provide the best equipment, we want to provide the best services and the best facilities for a customer to come into if they have an issue," says Mayor Dennis Pauley.