Report: Property crime in Mukilteo down in 2016

New police chief releases his first annual report
By Nicholas Johnson | Mar 29, 2017

Mukilteans experienced fewer burglaries, vehicle thefts and vehicle prowls in 2016 compared to the prior year.

That’s according to the Mukilteo Police Department’s annual report, released earlier this month by Police Chief Cheol Kang, who was appointed Jan. 3 after 13 years with the department.

“The success of this organization is a reflection of the great partnership we have forged with our community,” Kang said.

The 23-page report details the department’s activities and accomplishments during 2016. Reports dating back to 2010 are available for review on the city’s website, mukilteowa.gov.

Compared to 2015, vehicle thefts fell 30 percent from 50 to 35, vehicle prowls fell 17 percent from 198 to 164, and burglaries overall fell 32 percent. While residential burglaries fell 48 percent from 93 to 48, commercial burglaries rose 43 percent from 21 to 30.

Infractions, or traffic tickets, fell 57 percent while criminal citations rose 18 percent and jail bookings fell 8 percent. Parking tickets fell 23 percent from 2,675 to 2,048, but were still up nearly 300 percent compared to the 692 issued in 2014.

“Parking tickets increased primarily because of the downtown paid parking program,” Kang said.

“Traffic tickets decreased because patrol staffing has been down the bulk of the year, so more targeted patrols are being done for traffic related issues, with the priority going to the school zones to keep our kids safe.”

Officer Andy Illyn was named the Snohomish County DUI & Target Zero Task Force Officer of the Year for his work with DUI emphasis and traffic safety patrols. For the sixth year in a row, Mukilteo had no fatal traffic collisions.

“I am so proud of the achievements of the women and men in our Police Department,” Mayor Jennifer Gregerson said.

“The success of the Citizen’s Academy, new School Resource Officer and Domestic Violence Coordinator positions, National Night Out, and the happy statistic of a 32 percent reduction in property crimes demonstrates their commitment to our community and safety for all of us.”

The department added a school resource officer in Alicia Dodds for the first time in more than a decade.

“The SRO program has not been around since the late 90s, so it’s great to have an officer back at Kamiak and building the partnerships with the staff, students and parents,” Kang said.

The department is now hiring after losing three people last year, including former chief Chuck Macklin and Det. Lance Smith, both of whom retired, and officer Mike Wheeler, who voluntarily resigned to go on a religious mission.

The department’s domestic violence coordinator, Tiffany Krusey, who began in 2015, handled more than 200 cases in 2016, helping victims navigate the legal system and providing resources to keep them safe.

Officers saw a 14 percent increase in false alarm calls from businesses and residents. They issued 89 warnings to those who had two false alarm responses in a six-month period, but issued no infractions for cases of three false alarms in the same period.

The department had 28 volunteers in 2016, four of whom are volunteer chaplains. The department expects volunteer ranks to swell to 39 in 2017.

“The police volunteers are a dedicated and hard-working group looking to give back to the community by assisting with numerous programs, such as vacation house checks, neighborhood speed watch and outreach programs,” Kang said. “And, the program is continuing to grow with each Citizens Police Academy class that is put on.”

2016 was the department’s first full year using the New World mobile report writing and Law Enforcement Records Management system. In November, the department launched a community crime map, at communitycrimemap.com, that aggregates crime data from multiple agencies for a complete picture of crime in Mukilteo.

This year, the department plans to launch its first Mukilteo Youth Police Academy that will provide classes specific to teen issues, such as “Teen Dating,” “The Truth About Vapes,” and “Safe Driving.”

“The success of this organization is a reflection of the great partnership we have forged with our community,” Kang said. “I’m excited for 2017 and the great work that the staff here does day in and day out.”

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