Mayor Ron Dellums has yet to receive credit for it, but serious crime has been plummeting in Oakland for more than a year now. According to the Chron, March will mark the fifteenth straight month of declines. The Trib reports that serious crime is down across the board. This year, homicides are down 26 percent, aggravated assaults have dropped 31 percent, rapes have plummeted 45 percent, robberies are down 27 percent, and thefts have decreased by 38 percent.
It’s a remarkable turnaround. And it’s happened during a steep economic recession and incredibly high unemployment — two factors often tied to crime increases. And that’s all the more reason for why Dellums should finally receive credit for presiding over crime drops that can be attributed, at least in part, to law enforcement initiatives adopted during his administration and his hiring of new Police Chief Anthony Batts. Dellums was widely blamed for the city’s high crime rate in 2007 and 2008, but since it started plummeting in early 2009, he hasn’t received recognition for it. It’s about time that changed.