Archive for Thursday, February 15, 2007

Serious crime climbs in De Soto in 2006

February 15, 2007

Johnson County Sheriff's Office deputies had a busy 2006 in De Soto, according to its year-end report.

The annual report tracks the Sheriff's Office's responses in two different criminal categories: Felonies and serious misdemeanors charged through Johnson County District Court and less serious misdemeanor offenses handled by De Soto Municipal Court.

Those crimes in the first category include such offenses as arson, rape, battery and assault while the non-felony offenses forwarded to the city include such things as first-time driving under the influence tickets, disorderly conduct, curfew violations and liquor law citations.

The report shows responses to more serious crimes went up significantly in 2006 with vandalism. Deputies filed 275 reports from De Soto for serious crimes in 2006 compared to 223 the previous year or a 23-percent increase.

Drug, vandalism and battery charges accounted for most of the increases.

In addition, deputies issued 181 tickets for those offenses handled by municipal courts.

Deputies issued fewer traffic tickets in De Soto last year. In fact, the 1,626 traffic citations handed out in the city in 2006 were 249 fewer than issued in 2005 and 167 fewer than 2004. However, there were more tickets issued for speeding with 704 written in 2006 compared to 604 in the year before. Some of the speeding tickets were issued on Kansas Highway 10.

There were 98 motor vehicle accidents reported in De Soto last year, with 11 listed as injury accidents. There were no fatal accidents.

Last year's accident total is slightly lower but consistent with those of earlier years with 101 accidents reported in 2005 and 103 in 2004.

The Lexington Avenue and Commerce Drive intersection, the sight of numerous accidents in recent years, should get safer soon. The company contracted to install a traffic light there, Wildcat Signal of Manhattan, started installing the cable needed for the signal before cold weather brought the work to a halt.

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