The Colorado Bureau of Investigation released 2018 crime statistics for 245 law enforcement agencies across the state this week as violent crimes and drug busts appear to have gone up in Colorado as the state had a total clearance rate of 35.89%.
Clearance rate refers to crimes that result in charges being brought against one or more suspects.
This region continues to have a high number of narcotics and drug offenses compared to the rest of the state, but for Mesa County and the Grand Junction Police Department, the trend for those crimes and others appears to be going down in 2018.
The violent crime rate for the Grand Junction Police Department — that is the number of violent crimes committed per 1,000 residents — was slightly higher than both the state and Mesa County figures.
For the Police Department, 5.29 violent crimes were committed per 1,000 residents, compared to 4.48 for the state and 3.68 for Mesa County.
The rate for Mesa County had a significant downward trend. The 553 violent crimes reported in 2018 was a 22% decrease compared to the 709 committed in 2017.
That runs opposite to the rest of the state as Colorado had a 7.95% increase in violent crimes in 2018. Violent crimes decreased nearly 20% for the Police Department.
The clearance rate for violent crimes in Colorado was 49.32% compared to 51.36% in Mesa County.
Impaired driving trends for 2018 in Mesa County followed a similar decline over the past several years.
With 409 DUI arrests in Mesa County, DUIs were down nearly 12% compared to 2017, which is at least the fourth straight year a downward trend can be seen.
In 2014, there were as many as 722 DUIs reported in Mesa County.
The number of DUI arrests per 1,000 was right around the state average for the Police Department with 3.88 arrests compared to 3.75 for the state. For Mesa County it was 2.72.
Mesa County had 1,023 drug or narcotics violations in 2018. For an estimated population of a little more than 150,000, that comes to 6.81 per 1,000 residents.
The state crime rate for drug and narcotic violations is just under 4.
The drug and narcotic crime rate for the Police Department jumped to a bit less than 10.
However, the trend for the Police Department showed drug- and narcotic-related violations went down in 2018 compared to 2017 with more than a 9% decrease year over year.
The state, on the other hand, had more than a 5% increase in drug and narcotic violations in 2018.
The Mesa County crime data came from the Grand Junction Police Department, the Mesa County Sheriff's Office, the Palisade Police Department and the Fruita Police Department.
For a closer look at the data visit https://coloradocrimestats.state.co.us/tops/.