Metroparks Rangers weigh in on crime stats - WBRC FOX6 News - Birmingham, AL

Metroparks Rangers weigh in on crime stats

Lakefront Park Rangers are keeping a close eye on activities. Lakefront Park Rangers are keeping a close eye on activities.

Six months have passed since Metroparks Rangers started patrolling the Lakefront Parks, we're investigating what it means for your safety.

Folks coming to the parks have noticed that rangers are cracking down on crime and nonsense. We filed a request to see how.

In June the Metroparks took over the Lakefront Parks from the state.

Of course, the biggest crime headline--the bust of a priest accused of trying to buy sex even while he has the AIDS virus.  Otherwise, the most common cases involve traffic, drugs, and alcohol.  Past crime stats from the state were not available, but this is just what the chief of the rangers expected.

"The goals we set for ourself in June right after the land acquisition of the lakefront parks was to make sure they were clean and safe right away," said Dan Veloski.

Rangers patrol on horseback, on foot, in cars and on bikes. They want to be visible but what about all those traffic cases?

Well, park in a certain area and a ranger might run a check on your license plate.

Veloski said, "Most of what we're finding, we have to generate from good proactive police work.  People are not being victimized in the woods, on the beaches, on the trails. That is not happening."

 You can expect to see more rangers next year. The Metroparks will be hiring more to patrol the Lakefront and other parks.

Here are the Lakefront Parks crime stats from June through December 2013:

                                           Edgewater             E. 55th/E. 72nd       Euclid Beach/Wildwood

Alcohol Violation-                 19                           13                            3

Assist Other Agency-            19                           9                              2

 Closing Hours-                       5                             2                              0

Criminal Offense - Other-     19                            3                              3

Drug Violation-                       37                            27                           5

Property Damage -Criminal-  10                            0                             4


Public Indecency-                    8                              0                            6

Traffic - DUS-                           47                            104                       22

Traffic - DUI-                            3                               5                           0

Vehicle Break-In-                     1                               0                           0

Vehicle Recovery-                     2                               1                           1

Warrant-                                    27                             49                         9

Totals                                         197                           213                       55

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