South Charlotte

South Charlotte's crime rate declines

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department's Providence Division recently was recognized for having the greatest crime reduction of all 13 divisions in 2011.

CMPD saw a department-wide crime decrease in crime of 7.1 percent, while Providence Division's crimes dropped nearly 18 percent, according to CMPD's annual report.

Police Chief Rodney Monroe, a handful of Charlotte City Council representatives and members of the community gathered for the late-morning news conference Tuesday at the Providence Division's new headquarters at the corner of Wendover Road and Ellington Street.

Providence Division encompasses nearly 17.6 square miles, including Myers Park, Cotswold, Grier Heights, Cherry, Dilworth and SouthPark.

Monroe praised Providence Division Capt. Martha Dozier and her police force for their "commitment and dedication."

He said the results show that police vigilance coupled with cooperation with the community and district attorney's office is paying off.

Monroe also said CMPD tracks nearly 300 repeat offenders, almost on a daily basis.

"Crime prevention is a task that never ends, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week," said Monroe.

The following are highlights from the 2011 crime statistics report for Providence Division:

Robberies: 55 (down 34.5 percent)

Rapes: 11 (up 10 percent)

Aggravated assaults: 101 (down 15.1 percent)

Burglaries: 505 (down 12.3 percent)

Murders and nonviolent manslaughter: 3 (up 200 percent)

Larcenies: 1,759 (down 19.4 percent)

Vehicle thefts: 99 (down 8.3 percent)

Arsons: 3 (down 50 percent)

"To us in Providence, these are not just numbers - they are fewer victims of crimes," said Dozier.

Dozier said her division's new, more accessible headquarters will also help its mission.

The former Providence Division headquarters was tucked away in a nearby business park.

The new 12,210-square-foot, single-story facility opened in November and is strategically located on a major thoroughfare - Wendover Road - and in the heart of Grier Heights. The neighborhood has been riddled with a violent crime rate more than five times the citywide average and a property crime rate more than twice the city average, according a 2010 city neighborhood study done with CMPD.

Dozier also thanked community volunteers, and the Providence force received pins for their efforts.

"I believe in the numbers, (and) I believe in our people," said Monroe.