CHARLOTTE — Violent crime and property crimes are up in Charlotte, according to Charlotte-Mecklenburg police’s mid-year statistics report.
During a Thursday morning news conference, CMPD said overall crime is up 4%.
Police said the biggest reason for that increase is property crime, which is up 6%. That included burglaries, which are up 23%; residential burglaries, which are up 14%; commercial burglary cases, which are up 33%; and stolen vehicle cases, which are up 10%.
Since the beginning of 2022, there have been more than 730 robberies. That’s up 5% from a year ago.
Violent crime is also up by 3%, with homicide victims increased by 8.5%. However, victims of violent crimes have fallen by 2%.
Officials said there has also been a rise in gun violence. Assaults with a gun are up more than 25% this year, compared to the five-year average. Police said that the frequency of shootings committed by juveniles has also increased.
Since the beginning of the year, 118 juveniles have been suspects in shooting-related cases, and 482 juvenile have been victims of shooting.
“This is an issue that’s not going away and is actually getting worse -- teens getting their hands on firearms and committing violent crimes, including murder. These firearms are getting into their hands in different ways, but the most common it seems is theft,” CMPD said in a tweet.
Since the beginning of 2022, more than 500 guns have been stolen from cars in the Charlotte community. CMPD said parents and guardians are not properly locking up their guns at home, and that people are leaving guns inside their cars, many times unlocked.
Police are asking for the community’s help by asking gun owners to be responsible -- reminding them to lock their cars, take their keys and make sure windows are closed when parked. Authorities are also pleading with parents for help with educating their children.
“The responsibility for the police is certainly to address crime, but there’s also a responsibility that goes with parenting and having children,” said Maj. Brian Foley. “We have a lot of parents that have zero engagement. We need active parents.”
Other tips from CMPD:
- Park in well-lit areas if possible.
- Never leave valuables in your vehicle, especially if they can be seen from outside the vehicle -- that’s especially important for firearms.
- Parents or guardians, you need to know where your children are and what they’re doing.
Grieving families who have lost loved ones to teen violence are also pleading for action inside homes, such as Andy Hernandez’s cousin. Police said Hernandez, 17, was shot and killed by two other teenagers as they tried to rob him in June.
“It’s almost like they were in an environment that allowed this to happen and allowed them to get into that situation where they could harm someone,” the cousin said.
(WATCH BELOW: Gaston County leaders talk about ways to decrease crime in the community)
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