During difficult economic conditions, crime usually goes up -- but not last year. Yesterday, the Colorado Bureau of Investigation released stats showing a 6.1 percent decrease of major crimes from 2007 to 2008, led by a 22 percent decline in car thefts. Denver Police Department spokesman Sonny Jackson suggested to the Denver Post that longer sentences for habitual offenders could be a factor in the latter drop. But what about the problems afflicting the auto industry as a whole? Does the fact that fewer cars are being manufactured and purchased mean there are fewer to swipe? Or are we all so broke these days that we can't afford to buy a new ride, even from thieves offering a larceny-related discount? Man, times are even tougher than I thought....
Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.