Website shows Memphis not meeting its goal to reduce property crime

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — According to the City of Memphis website, leaders list a goal of lowering property crime by 2 percent by this December, but as of the end July, the city's data shows a 6.14 percent increase.

Now city leaders can't seem to figure out who set the crime goals — listed right on their website — that include lowering property crime. Some of the goals may be too hard to meet at this point.

Property crime happens in every neighborhood, from burglaries to car break-ins and theft. Just this weekend, you can see dozens of incidents reported to Memphis police.

It's happened to Cooper-Young resident Nick Canterucci.

"I had a few items over the years taken off my front porch," he said. "They stole my phone and my TV. They broke into my house stole my shoes, clothes and everything."

Since Mayor Jim Strickland ran on a platform of reducing crime, WREG asked his staff what he thought about the spike.

In a statement, his Chief Communications Officer told us the police director helped set those goals.

"The police department's goal is to drive down all crime. While we have gained some ground fighting violent crime, we clearly have more work to do on property crimes. Reducing crime is a priority for this administration. Growing our police force will help us do that, and that's why this administration continues its work to recruit and retain police officers. In the meantime, the City of Memphis will continue to share our data so that people know what's happening in their city--whether it's good, bad or improving," said Madden.

Police listed a number of tools they implemented to combat major property crime, like using crime data to deploy officers to hotspots. MPD also says neighborhood watches are effective.

Canterucci believes his neighborhood watch helps ward off property crime.

"The neighborhoods who take interest are the ones that are mostly crime-free in my opinion," he said.  "It's pretty good. They caught several people who are what we called repeat offenders."

There is some good news in the crime statistics, however: The city also set a goal to reduce violent crime by 1 percent, but as of now, the city has seen a 5.9 percent drop.

The mayor's staff says the data comes from MPD's Real Time Crime Center.