ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - For more than three years, Albuquerque's mayor and police chief have made stopping burglars, robbers and thieves a priority with the city's property crimes initiative. On Friday afternoon, Mayor R.J. Berry unveiled the plan to further "Our City, Our Property, Our Plan," focusing on copper thefts and targeting repeat offenders.
According to data released by the city, copper thefts account for 14 percent of all commercial burglaries reported. The mayor says he wants to pass an ordinance prohibiting cash transactions on pricey metals like copper.
Berry made a property crimes crackdown a big part of his platform, announcing the initiative in 2010. Since then, property crime statistics have risen slightly, though the city says the numbers remain at a record low.
Chief Ray Schultz said Albuquerque police officers have stepped up—and cracked down on crime in the city.
"We gave them a challenge three years ago to really change the behavior of property crime offenders in this city, and they stepped up to the challenge," Schultz said. "I think the most telling detail is an increase in the number of arrests that have occurred."
Another big part of the second phase of the property crimes initiative is highlighting repeat offenders using APD's website, social media and in releases to the media. A new system developed by the Smart Policing Division will alert officers when repeat offenders are released from jail.
APD will also increase community awareness campaigns, expand the neighborhood watch blog throughout the city, and use Twitter to link stolen car information to highway signs along major interstates.
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