Crime Rate Drops in Randall County

A crackdown on methanphetamine is credited with cutting the crime rate in rural Randall County.

Newschannel 10's Marissa Bagg joins us live in the newsroom with more on the double-digit decrease. 

15% less crimes were recorded in rural Randall County in 2006 compared with 2005.

Sheriff Joel Richardson attributes that mainly to success in the war on drugs. "Our labs have dropped to almost nothing, we've put lots of people in jail, we've made lots of arrests and we've confiscated meth, and we feel like we're having an impact," says Richardson.

And you can see that impact in these numbers. Burglary and car theft, which are often drug and methanphetamine related crimes are down in large percentages.

Aggravated assault also took a drop. The numbers suggest a decrease in drug use... and Richardson says everyone in the panhandle is affected by drugs like meth, whether they realize it or not.

"Whether it's your taxes, whether you know someone affected by it, or you used it, or you come home and found your car is gone or broken into... You are paying for effects of meth, every man woman and child is affected. So it's a big thing when we see effects we're seeing," says Richardson. 

The Sheriff says the cut in crime is a big feat for a county that's growing. "You have a county here that's growing 2-4% a year and we've had our share of crime increase, but to have a double digit decrease in one year is significant."

Rape, robbery and arson were the only crimes that increased in rural Randall County in 2006.