There is some good news today from Statistics Canada. St. John’s now leads the country with the largest decrease in police report crime in Canada.
Crime in St. John’s dropped 15 per cent between 2016 and last year. Nationally, crime increased two per cent. It was the third consecutive national increase after 11 years of decline. The rest of the province has good news as well; crime province-wide is down nine per cent.
One of the big changes nationally will be legalization of cannabis. Last year offences involving marijuana declined for the sixth year in a row, down 15 per cent. The bad news is sexual assaults are up by 13 per cent. The crime severity index is a measure of both the volume and severity of police-reported crime. To determine this, all crimes are assigned a weight based on actual sentences handed down by the courts with more serious crimes assigned a higher value than less serious ones.
As a result, more serious offences have a greater impact on changes in the index.