Burglaries up a little, village crime drops

Crime is up a little bit around the Covenant, according to the Rancho Santa Fe Patrol's semiannual report. While there was a 12 percent increase in burglaries from last year, felonies and misdemeanors in the village have gone down since last year thanks to the patrol's increased presence and efforts, Chief Matt Wellhouser said.

"The village was hit pretty hard last year," Wellhouser said of 2008's 11 felonies and misdemeanors in the village.

This year, there have only been four, marking a 36 percent reduction.

"We've worked very hard to shift officers around and use different patrol techniques," Wellhouser said. "We turned the numbers around a little bit, and we hope it continues for the rest of the year."

From January through June 2009, there have been 18 burglaries: six residential, nine business or construction site and three vehicles. During the same span in 2008, there were 14 burglaries.

One area Wellhouser is happy to see improvement is in traffic collisions, which are down 15 percent.

He attributes the lower numbers to the work the California Highway Patrol is doing with traffic control.

The Rancho Santa Fe Patrol has conducted 14,020 security and vacation checks so far this year, and it is an area the patrol is looking to streamline. Wellhouser said they are working on a new vacation check reporting system, which would allow homeowners online access.

"The ultimate goal is to make it more convenient," Wellhouser said, noting that with the new system a homeowner could make a request by logging on while sitting at the airport.

   
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