Whistler RCMP released its crime statistics for the first six months of the year and, despite a slight rise in violent crime, the results were generally positive, showing significant drops in a number of areas.
Overall, violent crime rose nine per cent from January to June, with 94 reported incidents. Also in that category are assaults, including sexual assaults, domestic violence and assaults with a weapon, which rose 10 per cent, with a total of 85 incidents (see related story on page 20). Inspector Neil Cross attributed the rise partially to the resort's expanding events schedule.
"A lot of that I would attribute just to how busy we are," he said while addressing council last week. "We've had a very busy summer, and lots of people are coming, and the more festivals and events we have, the more people we have in town and the more instances that occur."
The number of missing person files was nearly identical to last year's figure of 25, with only one additional report in 2014.
Some positives can be taken away from the property crime stats, which police have chopped by a third this year, with a total of 341 reported incidents. Break and enters fall under this category, as well as auto theft, mischief to property and bicycle thefts, which dropped nearly 40 per cent to 23 cases. The statistics do not include July and August, the months when bike thefts tend to spike.
Despite the overall decrease in property crime, residential break and enters are up from 19 incidents last year, to 25 during the same period in 2014. Cross said a chunk of these offences came as a result of people leaving their vacation homes unlocked.
In other crime, frauds were down 63 per cent, from 59 to 22 reported cases, while public intoxication, a recurring issue in Whistler, was down 20 per cent.
Regarding traffic safety, the stats remained relatively stable, with 71 total collisions — none of them fatal — compared to 73 last year. Impaired drug and alcohol driving infractions were down a whopping 67 per cent, to 37 incidents, although Cross said that may have to do with a recent change in the RCMP's internal classification process.
Visit www.tinyurl.com/whiscrime for the full report.
Laser pointer shined at airliner
Police are on the lookout for a suspect who reportedly shined a laser pointer with stunning accuracy at an airliner passing over Whistler on its downward approach to Vancouver International Airport.
The incident occurred Saturday night, Aug. 9, and was traced to an area south of the village, said RCMP Sgt. Rob Knapton.
"Believe it or not, they can pinpoint where these come from pretty accurately," he said. The investigation is ongoing.
Thief scales scaffolding to access several residential units
Several items were reported stolen early Saturday from Carleton Lodge in the village after a suspect climbed his way into the building, which is currently undergoing renovations.
"It looks like access was gained partly through using some of the scaffolding to access a window," Knapton said.
Police said the suspect entered several residential units. The investigation continues.
Wheelchair lift stolen from business
A business on Lake Placid Road reported the apparent theft of a specialized hydraulic wheelchair lift on Monday afternoon, Aug. 11.
Whistler RCMP have no suspects at the moment. Knapton was unsure if the alleged theft was a multi-person job.