Police Stats: Crime Down Overall, Violent Crime Up

In the Sunday edition of the CT Post, reporter Dan Tepfer chronicles election-year challenges to secure crime statistics from the Police Department as public safety emerges as a key issue in the race for mayor. OIB has received a copy of the official police report that shows crime overall is down the first six months of 2015 from the first six months of 2014, but also punctured by an increase in violent crime such as murders and incidents of shootings during the same period. Violent crime is on the rise in many cities across the country compared to last year.

The number of murders so far this year is 11, more than double that at the same period last year. For comparison’s sake,  below are the numbers for first six months this year to last year. So the respective periods end June 30 to reflect six months and do not account for the month of July. According to police statistics, overall crime is down by nearly 18 percent, the rub is violent crime increases that show major spikes in murders and shooting incidents.

The Police Department breaks down crime into seven major categories: murder, rape, robbery, felony assault, burglary, felony larceny and motor vehicle thefts. When all major areas are combined, police stats show a reduction in crime. The major area of concern, however, violent crime, is up from last year.

Citywide crime comparison first six months of 2015 from 2014, according to official Police Department statistical incidents:

2015 Murder, 8; 2014 Murder, 2

2015 Rape, 32; 2014 Rape, 34

2015 Robbery, 207; 2014 Robbery, 238

2015 Felony Assault, 115; 2014 Felony Assault, 106

2015 Burglary, 368; 2014 Burglary, 447

2015 Felony Larceny, 36; 2014 Felony Larceny, 76

2015 Motor Vehicle Thefts, 212; 2014 Motor Vehicle Thefts, 283

The Police Department breaks down the city geographically by East, West and Central. The major violent crime increase is Central that covers the public housing Trumbull Gardens Apartments that saw a spray of gunfire that victimized nine including one dead. The number of shooting victims in that area is up from 7 last year to 23 this year, according to police statistics.

The East section of the city has also experienced an increase in violent crime.

The West section that includes Black Rock and Brooklawn neighborhoods is the lowest crime rate.

As a general rule, geographically West covers everything west of Park Avenue to the Fairfield line; Central east of Park Avenue to the Pequonnock River and East outward to the Stratford line.



  1. I wonder who is the Chef in city hall?
    He or she did a good job cooking the books. Lol.
    Why did it take so long to give any numbers to the public?
    Maybe because they had to keep it in the oven a bit longer. Lol.
    We, the well informed people don’t believe you, FINCHOCCHIO.

  2. This is exactly why Finch has not fired the chief as many people have suggested. He needs him around to manipulate stats for him. No other chief would allow themselves to be manhandled like Gaudett has. No cojones. Finch is getting what he wanted when he picked this guy and is probably regretting it now as crime soars.

  3. Phantom, Mayor Finch owns the Chief because he let him retire, paid him his retirement and then let him sign a contract to be the new chief. The Chief with his retirement and salary is making in excess of $200,000 a year. What was your question again?

  4. You’ve got that right, Phantom. No cojones. That’s what happens where a person is giving the rank of Chief when that person was not even a patrolman.
    By the way, two more people were shot last night on Stratford Ave.

  5. Gaudett claims they were removed months ago after officers began filing their reports by computer. But computer reports have not been made available either, which is common at some police departments. CT Post Sunday, August 2, 2015.
    Lies. Lies and more lies. If that’s the case they are filing reports by computer, should be easier for the media and public to access them. He lied on the stand when he said he was not talking on the phone when he got into a car accident. How can we believe this guy!

  6. I read Dan Tepfer’s story in yesterday’s Post. It’s appalling the Finch administration would cynically withhold police reports in order to lend spurious legitimacy to the mayor’s claim “Bridgeport is safer than ever.”

    Joseph Gaudett ought to be ashamed of himself. For one thing he repeated Finch’s lie, “The city is safer than ever.” (He ought to know better, being the head of the police department.) For another he dressed down Captain A.J. Perez for doing his job. The police department exists to serve and protect the public trust and uphold the law, in case anyone has forgotten. Perez was investigating a series of armed robberies. He released surveillance video of a suspect. It helped: the suspect was arrested by Stamford police officers for a series of armed stickups down there. Captain Perez was doing his job, protecting the public from a dangerous criminal. What did Chief Gaudett do? He read the riot act to Capt. Perez because the façade of Bridgeport being “safer than ever” was blown. Gaudett ought to think about retirement options. Using the police department to shore up the fading political fortunes of a lame duck mayor is deplorable.
    Bill Finch ought to be ashamed of himself as well. The Black Rock Community Council held a forum on public safety last week. Mary-Jane Foster and Joe Ganim were in attendance. Bill Finch showed up as well, about an hour into it. He spoke to the crowd, not about public safety issues, no, instead taking the opportunity to extoll his nonexistent virtues as a mayor. He blathered on about Steal Point, creating “thousands of jobs” and other irrelevant items until an angry resident shouted “We are here for Black Rock.” The incumbent is a lame duck.

    Given all Billy Finch says he’s doing for Bridgeport I have to wonder why, according to campaign financial reports, only about 10% of the donations to his re-election campaign came from Bridgeport residents. More than 50% of the donations to Joe Ganim’s campaign came from Bridgeport residents. Let’s face it: Ganim is the only serious challenge to Finch’s continued occupation of the mayor’s office. Joe Ganim is the one candidate who scares the living shit out of Finch and his cronies taking up space at the Morton Government Center. None of them wants to apply for unemployment benefits.

    1. Bridgeport Kid, did you say this blog was or was not the JOE GANIM FAN CLUB? The way you insult me you have to be one of the biggest Ganim ass-kissers on this blog. How many Ganim ass-kissers can you fit on this blog? You hear that sucking sound??? Kid, honestly? The way you assault me for supporting Finch. What in hell is your deal??? You are embarrassing! You may not be drinking kool-aid but you are definitely drinking something!

      You want to laugh??? I read your LinkedIn page. If I didn’t know any better, I’d think I was reading my own. Scary!

      1. It’s the present the people of the city of Bridgeport are concerned with. How can you be so obtuse? All you talk about is the cranes in the air and the shovels in the ground. Bill Finch is very weak as an incumbent, a lame duck in less polite political language. The list of failures by this administration grows longer every day.

        Let’s run down a few of the more noteworthy gaffes:
        • A promised $600 tax rebate. It never materialized.

        • A statement to News 12 that taxes have remained steady since he took office. Under Finch’s watch taxes have gone up four times. FOUR FUCKING TIMES.

        • Finch is on the record saying “People in Black Rock need to understand why they have to pay more in taxes.”

        • Finch is on the record saying “Democracy doesn’t always work” in reference to his lame-brained attempt to make the BOE an appointed body. Mr. Finch has control issues, apparently.

        Finch and his representatives, including Police Chief Joseph “Barney Fife” Gaudett have made statements to the effect that Bridgeport is “Safer than ever.” Must be hard to say that with a straight face, especially when the mayor’s office is withholding police reports from the news media. It is appalling a mayor and his police chief would withhold public records in order to shore up the falling fortunes of a lame-duck candidacy. It also strikes a few of us as very cynical. Those statements are contradicted by current events:
        • a mass shooting at Trumbull Gardens that left one man dead and eight other innocent citizens wounded, some seriously;

        • another shooting in the same neighborhood that left another man dead;

        • still two other shootings that left two more dead;

        • A drive-by shooting that put two other men in the intensive care unit at Bridgeport Hospital;

        • A bar fight in Black Rock that left a man dead in Ash Creek.

        And now there’s the 35-year tax abatement. Did I mention the developer who is going to receive this largesse made a $4000 contribution to Finch’s re-election campaign? It looks suspiciously like pay-to-play. And, as every attorney and politician in the United States of America will tell you, the mere appearance of impropriety is often worse than an actual impropriety. When this was shot down by a 10-8 vote by the City Council, Finch had a tantrum. Didn’t get his way so he assaulted an Alderman.

        Less than 10% of the contributions to Finch’s campaign came from Bridgeport residents. He’s polling with a higher disapproval rating than Joe Ganim, the convicted felon endorsed by the union representing uniformed Bridgeport police officers, endorsed by the FBI agent who investigated and arrested him. Imagine that, a convicted felon more popular than a sitting mayor. It’s no wonder Maryli Secrest is singling out Joe Ganim and overlooking the fact Mary-Jane Foster, Charles Coviello, Howard Gardner and Enrique Torres are also running for mayor.

        1. Maryli Secrest is not overlooking anything, Bridgeport Kid. Those candidates have not made any serious contribution to anything happening in the city.

          You are still talking about a $4,000 contribution and think the Mayor believes he deserves a 35-year tax abatement? How about the kids and the families in the neighborhood? Do they not deserve better living conditions? Bridgeport Kid, how about the fact the very property in question was part of Joe Ganim’s pay-to-play corruption lawsuit? Does that not resonate with you? Hallet Street is not located in Black Rock. The property was part of Father Panik Village. You have no vision and you are a Ganim supporter.

        2. You cannot keep blaming the Mayor for the shootings. It is wrong and just plain ignorant. Look, the $600 rebate is eight years old, it isn’t as though he went to jail and killed the reputation of the city by suggesting a rebate.

          1. If Bill Finch took $4000 from a campaign contributor and then tried to whiz a no-strings-attached 35-year tax abatement through the City Council, it looks less than scrupulous. As any attorney or elected official will tell you, the mere appearance of impropriety can often do more damage than any actual impropriety. Ask Johnny Fabs.

            As far as better living conditions for underprivileged children living in Bridgeport, I’m all for it. The problem is, the developer who would have received the 35-year tax abatement would not have been required to hire Bridgeport residents or make any economic contributions to the city.

            Furthermore, those children would be enrolled in Bridgeport’s public schools at an annual cost of about $14,000 each. The BOE’s budget is coming up short to begin with and you want to add more financial strain? How is the city going to pay for it? Eventually Finch, with the “cooperation” of the aldermen he is able to coerce, would have to raise taxes a fifth time. When that happens I will be one among many going to each house, knocking on the doors and telling the homeowner “Bill Finch and the individual you elected to the City Council voted to raise your taxes, AGAIN.”

    1. I don’t get that. Captain Perez is a dedicated law enforcement professional who is doing what he took an oath to do, serving and protecting the public. He took a dangerous predicate offender off the streets. For his trouble he was given the riot act. Chief Gaudett really ought to think about retiring.

    2. Do we even know any of this is true? Are we going to milk the police as Ganim’s only endorsement for every little bit of gossip passed along? Was A J Perez crying? If Mr. Paris the Police Union president stopped drinking for free at Testo’s bar, he might see the world more clearly and stop trying to make the police and crime the cornerstone of this election. Everybody is talking. Ganim and Foster have been perpetuating this negative crap. Who would want to live here under their depressing leadership? I really did think Bridgeport was getting better every day, but in reality it sucks almost as much as when Joe Ganim destroyed our chances during the most robust Clinton economy. And if we do not think Steelpointe, parks, schools, reputation, waterfront access and Pleasure Beach are worthy of a mention, what in hell does anyone believe Mary-Jane Foster can bring having Moore and Gomes in her corner? Win Joe, Win; win Joe, Win … not!

  7. I don’t see a “home invasions” listing. There was a near-fatal home invasion of an elderly woman’s home in Lake Forest over a month ago, and Lake Forest residents seeking answers concerning this situation have been repeatedly stymied during this time. So far BPD has not managed to produce any suspects or announce any leads in the investigation, if indeed there is even one going on. After all, how much does an elderly woman’s life matter in an election year?

    This city has become a sickening place to live and no one in a position to do anything about it seems to be aware of our condition, let alone care enough to take action to correct the dysfunctional dynamic at work here. (And I’m not just talking about City Hall.)

    This is a symptom of inept, dysfunctional, uncaring government. It is inexcusable and indicates the need for major changes top-to-bottom at state and city levels. (We have to start in Bridgeport.)

    Furthermore, it is shameful the Connecticut Post and other local media have held back on this Lake Forest home invasion stor–at the behest of City Hall and BPD.

    I was surprised at the long-delayed response of the Post to the City Hall/BPD news blackout. However I am not optimistic the unprofessional, public disservice of protecting incumbent/favored politicians by Hearst/The Connecticut Post will change.

    Since the Hearst takeover, the Connecticut Post has come to resemble the Soviet Union’s “Pravda” publication more and more–especially over the past two years. This is one of the reasons why we are stuck with Dan Malloy and so many other clowns and fools in Connecticut government.

    If it weren’t for OIB, I doubt there would be any real political/government news available to Bridgeport politics/government watchers.

    It would be good if all OIB bloggers shared their Bridgeport crime news on the blog. It would help all the people of the city. Awareness of crime is, of course, the first step in preventing more crime. Perhaps we could also generate some reliable statistics to counter the City Hall, Connecticut Post, election-year propaganda numbers.

  8. Finch cannot he held responsible for all the crime in the city. Bridgeport always had a high crime rate.
    www .city-data.com/crime/crime-Bridgeport-Connecticut.html
    In 2003 the crime rate was 532.7. In 2013 it was 462.8. The crime rate was very high in 2012 but other than 2012 crime was higher during the Ganim years than Finch. Crime rates always go up when the economy goes down. The mobster days of the great depression are a good example. Ganim had about the same or greater crime rates, less development and proportionately high taxes during a considerably better economy. The tax rate under Ganim was higher as a percentage when compared to the minimum wage and average city worker wage. In other words, it cost Ganim less to run the city and the mil rate was proportionately higher if not just higher. In 2001 the BPT mil rate was 62.4 and that was down 4% from the year before. You can look up wage data on your own.
    www .courant.com/hc-class-real-millrates-htmlstory.html

  9. Remember that Bridgeport’s crime melt-down of the ’80s-’90s was coincident with the Reagan and Bush administrations/recessions and the entree of crack cocaine use/dealing in the socioeconomic dynamic of US urban life. Twelve consecutive years of Republican disdain and abuse of urban America–in the face of recession and crack cocaine–is what caused (allowed) the unprecedented crime wave in the ’80s-’90s. It was only after the Clinton Administration’s efforts at the rescue of our urban centers that crime rates started to drop and urban crime become manageable.

    In Bridgeport, the introduction of 21st century policing and the beginning of the change of the Walsh-era BPD culture, started the trend that brought our crime rates in line with other cities of similar size.

    The crime spike of 2015 is attributable to what?

    And now we are discovering crime stats have been suppressed by City Hall/BPD and the local media.

    But no surprise here, regarding the latter situation–the crime stats I compiled with the Lake Forest Block Watch, when I coordinated that group, were usually significantly out of line with the official crime stats for the city, due to frequent, serious under-reporting of crime by BPD and the media.

    1. Actually Jeff, the ‘just say no’ campaign of Nancy Reagan was one of the most successful anti-drug efforts ever. Drugs and crime, in general, in urban areas is more attributable to the ‘snitches get stitches’ mentality than anything else.

    2. The crime spike of 2015 is attributable to recent recession. There is a segment of the population that will just commit crime. Up from that we have a segment that will work as long as jobs are easy and plentiful (work is easier than crime). Then you have those who will commit crime if things get desperate.
      2015 was when the desperation set in. Even now, the drug war that is currently waging in Trumbull Gardens is drug dealers fighting for turf because the money that once existed is just not there. These urban entrepreneurs are simply fighting for customer base. The mayor and Trumbull Gardens are just unfortunate victims of this. When you look to cast blame you could point at the mayor understaffing the police department, but you could, just as easily, look at the residents of Trumbull Gardens who were in the parking lot smoking blunts and sipping Henny. I am sure many of the recent shootings are the ‘back and forth’ of the initial shootings. The only real solution to this violence is to eliminate that demand for the product.

      1. If you really wanted to really get ‘conspiracy theory’ crazy, it would be just as easy to hypothesize the recent gang violence was initiated to correspond with the mayoral elections to negatively affect the Finch campaign as it would be to push the idea crime stats are fudged or your ‘gold coast’ theories. There is just as much circumstantial evidence for one as the other if you believe the effect is evidence for the cause.

    3. Even if you consider the crime stats to be under-reported, they help to get a comparison between two periods of time. Assuming the under-reporting is consistent over time. Andmar and I have shown two independent crime statistic reports that show crime under Finch is lower than crime under Ganim (although only slightly) even though Gamin was mayor during more favorable conditions. Note: I cannot know if the two reports shown drawn their research from the same source, meaning the same error could be present in both.

  10. BOE SPY: The Nancy Reagan “Just Say No” campaign is just a silly old joke; right?

    Crime stat fudging is probably only consistent year to year within a given administration, with “election years” having a significantly greater fudge factor.

    Was there a recession in 2014-2015 the rest of us haven’t heard about? Crime is going up because the Bridgeport economy is horrible and BPD is dangerously understaffed.

  11. Although these types of drug education programs have a limited effectiveness, the ‘just say no’ program was more effective than most.

    Nancy Reagan’s related efforts increased public awareness of drug use, but a direct relationship between reduced drug use and the Just Say No campaign cannot be established, although the use and abuse of illegal recreational drugs significantly declined during the Reagan presidency.

  12. Was there a recession in 2014-2015 the rest of us haven’t heard about?

    Yes Jeff, there has been a recent economic downturn (the last 5-6 years). Possibly you missed it. You really should try to be more in touch with what is happening in your city and state. Although parts of the country have started to recover (the south, Texas, NJ), New England and especially Connecticut have not. Police staffing does affect how crimes are handled but the economy is far more at fault for why crimes happen. People commit crime because they need the money, not because there is no cop present. Greenwich has fewer cops than Bridgeport but BPT has more crime. Recent crimes in Stratford were committed by people from Bridgeport. The people who commit the crimes need the money.


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