Mark Twain once said “There are three types of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.” In the case of a politician who has a personal interest in being re-elected, it all comes down to how they are using the statistic in a way that tells their particular lie.
Scott Jones intentionally excluded cities with high crime rates, but included cities with lower (and thus better) crime rates, to intentionally mislead Sacramento County residents into believing that crime overall was down.
The one city Jones excluded, is the one that receives all of the area’s criminals for booking and release. All arrested criminals in Sacramento County are brought to the Sheriff’s jail located in the City of Sacramento for booking, arraignment, and release. Most of the released criminals are set free from that jail in the City of Sacramento, and their rate of re-offending with a new crime is about 4 out of every 5 who are released (79%) within the first 18 months. Plus, new criminals are being added to that list growing every day.
As soon as those criminals are released (usually at 11 p.m. at night, and with no ride to where they want to go), they’re off to go steal something locally or find their next drug fix. After committing their first crimes in the City of Sacramento, they eventually make their way back home to continue with their criminal lifestyle.
So how can Sheriff Scott Jones claim that crime is down? Because Jones intentionally excluded the entire City of Sacramento region and population from his cooked crime statistics for the County of Sacramento, but included the cities of Rancho Cordova and Elk Grove, and Citrus Heights.
But in his typical ‘smoke and mirrors’ approach to being Sheriff, Jones conveniently failed to share those important details.
City of Sacramento occupies 98 square miles within the County’s 994 square mile region, but has a much higher density of people who make up roughly 1/3rd of the County’s entire population, including the homeless population. So, sure, when a self-serving politician gets to exclude 490,000 people, or 1/3 of the entire county’s population who live in the City, it’s easy to claim that crime is down. Never mind that all of the county’s arrests bring the criminals into and released within City limits.
But is crime really down in Sacramento County’s total region? No!
early 29% greater chance of being robbed, burglarized, or otherwise subjected to one of the many types of property crimes in Sacramento County, as you do in the rest of California (1 in 27 for Sacramento, versus 1 in 38 for the State), with more than 18,488 local property crimes last year.
Plus, crime has recently been reclassified under the provisions of Props 47 and 57, in addition to the drug court diversions created by Prop. 36. Some crimes, like being an illegal alien or growing marijuana for sale, have been so drastically under-reported that in most cases these crimes are simply under-reported or ignored.
Sheriff’s dispatch may even tell you that your report probably won’t go anywhere, or officers are so busy that you will have to wait around for hours until they arrive, and so you might as well not make the call for police service. That is how crimes are still occurring, but they are being under-reported. The Sheriff even admits “The data does not include general calls for service or police activity where there was no crime report” created.