NEOSHO, MO.--- An end of the year report for Neosho shows a rise in criminal activity. Neosho is up 4% in overall crime from last year. The police chief says the department is still recovering from changes in staffing.
"We were on a cycle of decreasing crime. Then the layoffs came and we lost over 50% of our officers and crime did creep back up at that point," said David McCracken, Neosho Chief of Police.
Although the police force has recovered, they're still short five people from full staff. The amount of criminal activity in Neosho may have changed, but the crimes haven't.
"Violent crimes, murder and that type of thing, with the exception of the tragic events of a few years ago, we don't have much violent crime," said Chief McCracken.
Property crimes, such as stealing and burglary, top the list for Neosho.
"One of the things we'd really like to get done more is more patrolling of the residential areas. Patrolling the residential areas will prevent a lot of crimes that we have," said Chief McCracken.
Chief McCracken believes it was still a good year for the police department, despite the crime statistics.
"We'd like it to be zero or below, but we feel like what we have accomplished here is something that we can build on," said Chief McCracken.
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