According to statistics compiled by the LexisNexis Community Crime Map, several Phoenix-area cities are seeing a spike in property and violent crimes during the middle of the day and middle of the week.
“Every area is different. Every neighborhood is different,” said Ed Wessing, the executive commander of the Mesa Police Department. “We have analysts that work in every one of the patrol districts that look at the crime that occurred over the past 24 hours. And what they’re looking for is, do we have those hot spots? Do we have anything that’s trendable? Do we have anything that’s hitting more than one district?”
Crime reports are compiled by LexisNexis from most Valley cities and they are then turned into a searchable database, which contains mapping software and other data analytics.
On Friday and Saturday between 1 p.m. and 3 p.m., as well as Thursday between 6 p.m. and 7 p.m., property crimes spiked in central Phoenix.
Meanwhile in Gilbert, property crimes spiked on weekends between 3 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. In Goodyear, they spiked Tuesdays at 8 p.m. In Mesa, they spike Thursdays between 3 p.m. and 4 p.m.
It is believed that the reasons could be due to groups of car thieves or burglars working together.
“We will have a crew that will come to your neighborhood, and they will walk vehicle to vehicle in the neighborhood, testing doors, testing to see who left them unlocked, who left property in unsecured vehicles,” said Wessing.
According to Wessing and Sgt. Vincent Lewis from the Phoenix Police Department, one of the most important actions regular citizens can take is to limit the opportunities for criminals to strike.
“Simply keeping your yard clean and maintained and making your home lived-in is less likely to invite crime,” said Lewis.
Surveillance camera from local businesses and homeowners has helped authorities with deterring crime and helping solve crimes.
“It could give us height, weight, clothing, time of day, location, mode of travel, modus operandi. All of these things are helpful with investigating and solving crime,” said Lewis.