Fountain Valley's police chief predicts crime will rise in 2012, and he places the blame on an increased number of criminals released from county jails.
“For 2012, we won’t do as well as we did in 2011,” said Dan Llorens, head of the Fountain Valley Police Department. “We’re historically very, very low (when it comes to crime rates), and we still are, but what we’ve had now, more recently, is kind of a reversal of fortune.”
Lloren's prediction comes
According to an Orange County Register article, Orange County authorities were told to expect an increase of roughly 143 inmates last October as part of the state's “realignment,” a shift of inmates from state prisons to county jails.
Instead, 292 inmates arrived that month.
The increased number of prisoners forced the Orange County Jail to release people earlier, Llorens said.
In turn that created a jump in the number of ex-cons on probation, he said.
And because of that, Llorens added, Fountain Valley immediately saw an uptick in crime in October.
“It’s shifted the burden of supervision to the local probation departments,” Llorens said. “You have some very experienced criminals with a lot of time on their hands.”
Before 2012, Llorens said there had been an overall drop in crime in the city since about 1992.
The downward trend continued last year as the department detailed in their 2011 Annual Report.
“In 2011, we saw decreases almost across the board with the exception, which concerned us greatly, in residential burglary," Llorens said.
Llorens said the 20-year overall decrease happened for a number of reasons, including the three strikes law, the increased use of DNA testing and more mobile phones, which help residents report crimes.
Llorens said it’s important that locals alert police anytime they see suspicious activities.
To report a crime, call 714-593-4485.