Crime spike not the norm, preventable with cooperation of community

YRP Superintendent Fred Moffat recently hosted a Markham forum to discuss, among other things, the recent rise in crime, namely break and enters.

“We’re discussing the most pressing issues right here,” Moffat said. “Break and enters (are) the number one issue people want to hear about. We’ve had recent crime reported … these are crimes we don’t see a lot of here so we want to discuss what’s going on and how we’re working towards catching the bad guys.”

YRP’s #5 District, which stretches from Steeles to Stouffville, saw 63 reported break and enters near highways 404 and 407 in January alone, which Moffat said is due, in part, to criminals wanting a quick getaway.

YRP has upped its enforcement presence—including plainclothes officers—in these areas.

Moffat stressed the key message of the evening that YRP cannot do their jobs without the cooperation of the community who they view as partners in public safety:

“We want that message to spread that you can talk to a police officer any time about whatever your concern is and they’ll listen.” he said.

YRP property crime expert Sgt. Patrick Smyth said most break and enter suspects want to avoid confrontation, recommending people answer the door or show their face in a window if a stranger rings or knocks, attempting to see whether anyone is home. He urges residents talk to their neighbours, or take a picture with their smart phones when they notice something strange and out of the ordinary, such as chemical containers, odours, boxes moving in and out, and banging sounds.

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