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Stanislaus County Sheriff's Office reports low homicide rates in county

Stanislaus County Sheriff's Office reports lowest homicide numbers in nearly 10 years
Stanislaus County Sheriff's Office reports lowest homicide numbers in nearly 10 years 01:49

STANISLAUS COUNTY - The Stanislaus County Sheriff's Office reports it is seeing low homicide rates in the county, possibly the lowest in over 10 years.

"That is a marked drop from what we've seen in years prior where during the height of the pandemic we saw an uptick in those numbers," Sergeant Luke Schwartz said. 

Stanislaus County is home to roughly 550,000 people and statistics from the California Department of Justice show the homicide rate has dropped dramatically in the last decade. 

The same is true for the last three years. In 2021, the county had 26 homicides, 27 in 2022 and in 2023 the Modesto Bee said there were 17.

"In 2023, our office investigated three homicides," Schwartz said.

Compare that to neighboring San Joaquin County, where nearly 790,000 people live. Data shows 63 homicides there in 2021 and 60 in 2022.

So why the drastic drop in one county and not another?

Schwartz says the increase in staffing is playing a role in the low numbers. 

"We are fortunate in the sense that we have resources, we have the staff that's strategically deployed and I believe that's a direct testament to why you're seeing the decrease in violent crime," Schwartz said.

With a couple hundred sworn-in, officers and even more deputies stationed at the county jail, Schwartz said they are lucky to have adequate staffing and the relationship with the community.

"We enjoy a lot of community support in Stanislaus County and I think that plays into it. That strong working relationship where people feel comfortable enough to come to the sheriff's department and provide valuable tips and information that helps further our investigation," Schwartz said.

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