A new Crime Severity Index (CSI) report by Statistics Canada is ranking Campbell River 38th for crime countrywide.

It’s based on data from last year, and finds that violent crime around town has gone up by over 67 per cent, with non-violent crime increasing by just under 78 per cent since 2018.

RCMP constable Maury Tyre says the major drivers that contributed to the big jump include break and enters, drug trafficking, fraud, and murder.

He says there was a spree of break and enters back in 2019, which police were able to investigate. They later arrested the suspects.

There was also a drug project that took place late last year, and while this did have a positive effect on the community, Tyre says it had a negative effect on the crime severity report.

“In order to conduct the investigation, multiple extra files of trafficking were created. With extra drug files, came extra scores for trafficking,” he says.

According to Tyre, the increase can be partly explained by a change in how StatsCan assesses crime data, the homicide on Vermont Drive last fall, and the presence of a few prolific offenders around town.

He says StatsCan’s report is a good marker to determine where more work is needed.

To make Campbell River less appealing to crime, Tyre says the RCMP have ramped up patrols for 2020. However, he says a joint effort by police, residents, local government, as well as the courts is needed.

Tyre says Campbell Riverites need to change the social culture in the community, adding that “I don’t want to get involved” or “I don’t want to be a snitch” are common statements police often hear.  

“Quite simply, it’s a stigma we have to break. People who come forward are doing so to prevent harm in the community, and they deserve our thanks and absolutely no one’s malice.”

If you don’t want to be caught for doing something illegal, Tyre says there’s a “sure-fire way.” Don’t do anything illegal.

If you’d like to report an offence in the community, reach out to the Campbell River RCMP at (250) 286-6221. In an emergency call, 911.