Carroll Police Chief Jeff Cayler makes reference to statistics comparing Carroll and cities in Iowa of comparable size and budgets. &ldquo;We are at, or near the bottom of each category of crime statistics,&rdquo; Cayler said. <span style="font-size: xx-small;"><em>Daily Times Herald photo by Jeff Storjohann</em></span>
Carroll Police Chief Jeff Cayler makes reference to statistics comparing Carroll and cities in Iowa of comparable size and budgets. “We are at, or near the bottom of each category of crime statistics,” Cayler said. Daily Times Herald photo by Jeff Storjohann
Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Carroll’s already-low crime rate has dwindled a bit further.

Fewer major crimes were reported in the past fiscal year, from July 2010 through June 2011, according to new Carroll Police Department statistics.

Thefts, burglaries, assaults and drunken driving dropped slightly in the past year, but criminal mischief inexplicably jumped about 78 percent.

(Reports of vandalism to vehicles and businesses doubled.)

Nonetheless, all categories are within the range they’ve been since 2006 except for OWIs, which have steadily declined about 52 percent since 2007.

All told, there were 309 reported crimes for those five categories last year.

“That’s ridiculously low,” Police Chief Jeff Cayler said. “We’re so doggone fortunate.”

Sound familiar? It should. Cayler says the same thing each year about the city’s persistently low crime rate.

And statistics compiled by the Federal Bureau of Investigation back him up:

Among the 11 Iowa cities with populations between 9,000 and 11,000, Carroll had the second-to-lowest number of major crimes reported in 2010.

Only Norwalk, a sleepy town just south of Des Moines, had fewer. It’s 24 crimes reported per 1,000 residents edged out Carroll’s 34.

On the other end of the spectrum was Keokuk, with a crime rate of 119 per 1,000.

Denison’s was 23 crimes per 1,000 residents, Jefferson was 28, Sac City was 29, Audubon was 34, Atlantic was 48 and Storm Lake was 68.

The highest crime rate in Iowa was notched by Council Bluffs with 140 per 1,000 residents. Des Moines was 108.

Cayler said public cooperation is a driving-force behind the city’s low crime rate.

“They are our eyes and ears,” he said of Carroll’s residents. “They don’t hesitate to call us when they see something outside of the norm.”