More people brings more crime to city
By Neal A. Shipman
As Watford City’s population continues to swell to an estimated 10,000 to 12,000 residents, Watford City’s police department is seeing an increase in crime.
“2019 was a busy year for all of us in Watford City and McKenzie County, as well as all of the Bakken,” states Shawn Doble, Watford City police chief. “We saw our calls for service go up 8.4 percent and our number of cases increase by 5.2 percent from last year.”
Doble says that the police department has seen a steady increase in the number of calls for service, with those calls ranging from drunk driving, aggravated assaults, larceny, burglary, to rape and domestic disturbances. The department has also seen its overall number of cases increase over the last three years as the city’s population has grown.
“We saw our calls of service increase from 14,238 in 2017 to 16,501 in 2018,” states Doble. “In 2019, we responded to a record 17,901 calls.”
Likewise, Doble says the 1,624 cases the department handled in 2019 was a new record compared to 1,268 and 1,543 cases in 2018 and 2017, respectively.
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