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Armory Park neighborhood and TPD take action amid crime spike

Posted at 6:19 PM, Sep 20, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-20 21:19:40-04

There has been an uptick in crime in the Armory Park neighborhood  in downtown Tucson. Between March 1 and September 11, the Tucson Police Department reported close to 600 calls to 9-1-1.

Burglaries, break ins, stolen vehicles, and property crimes within the past 3-months is sparking renewed community action. Tucson police lt. Tom Hawke said bicycle patrols from downtown is one way the department is trying to bring more presence to the neighborhood.

"We just can't be everywhere at once so if they see something suspicious, they need to call us and we'll get there as quickly as we can," said Hawke.

But Armory Park Neighborhood Association President Anne Cooper said since a big neighborhood meeting last week, she and others have seen much more police presence in the area.

"It's dramatically increased, we're seeing more and more patrol cars. I'm seeing an effort made on their part and I think that's wonderful as long as we keep that increase up, I think it'll be great," said Cooper.

Neighbors told KGUN9 On Your Side the level and intensity of these crimes are increasing, as well as how often they occur.|

"I think it is because they are seeing broken windows. People are trespassing, whereas they didn't quite do that before. So people are getting a little bit more daring," said Cooper.

Some neighbors said they believe the increase in crime is because of the homeless population in the area, but Tucson police say right now is too early to tell.

"We haven't made any arrests in these burglaries, we're following up with forensics and other things," said Hawke.

"We're not sure and that's one of the reasons why we're trying to start this dialogue with the police department to determine why this is happening and what we can do to mitigate it," said Cooper.

The next steps: neighbors will compile data themselves and present it at their next meeting -- the hope is to have the Pima County Attorney Office attend.