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Statistics Canada report shows fluctuations in Elk Valley crime levels

Crime in some parts of Fernie is on the rise, according to a report released by Statistics Canada.

In municipal Fernie, crime increased from 268 incidents in 2017 to 363 in 2018, an increase of 33.48 per cent. In rural Fernie, crime decreased from 190 to 111, a decrease of 42.2 per cent.

This brings the total number of incidents in 2018 to 474, higher than 2015 (459) and 2016 (427) but lower than 2014 (554).

The data released on July 22 shows that 54 adults and one youth were charged out of 474 incidents, last year.

The City of Fernie’s municipal crime severity index (CSI), which measures changes in the level of severity by assigning a weight based on the seriousness of a crime, increased 39 per cent from 36.63 to 50.98.

British Columbia’s overall CSI score for 2018 was 87.67, while Canada’s score was a 1.9 per cent increase to 75.01, which is a five-year high.

The CSI for rural Fernie decreased 43.95 per cent from 61.44 to 34.44.

Sparwood’s CSI decreased 20.57 per cent from 43.84 to 34.82.

The CSI in Elkford increased 21 per cent from 30 to 36.36.

Of Canada’s major cities, Regina recorded a CSI score of 126.63, followed by Winnipeg (119.43), Edmonton (114.89), Calgary (88.10), Vancouver (84.30), Halifax (67.33), Victoria (63.61), Montreal (58.29) and Toronto (53.64).

Sparwood’s crime in 2018 reached a five-year low of 213 incidents, a decrease of 13.75 per cent from 2017’s 242 incidents. The highest recorded year for crime was in 2014, with 300 incidents.

Out of the 2013 incidents in 2018, 31 persons were charged; 30 adults and one youth.

Elkford’s crime increased by 17.88 per cent to 90 incidents last year, compared to the 74 incidents in 2017. The lowest year for crime was in 2015 with 54 incidents, and it has been slowly increasing since then. 2014 was the highest year of crime in the past five years, with 93 incidents recorded.

Out of the 90 incidents last year, 18 persons were charged, all adults.

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