2008 Calgary Transit Crime and Disorder Statistics

The attached 2008 Calgary Transit Crime and Disorder Statistics are collected by Calgary Transit’s Public Safety and Enforcement Section and incorporates data supplied by the Calgary Police Service. Both sets of data include disorder incidents and crimes for the years 2007 and 2008 which are presented by CTrain line (northwest, northeast, downtown and south) and by CTrain stations. Important facts and considerations relevant to interpreting the data are below.

Calgary Transit Data

Calgary Transit Peace Officers respond to complaints or concerns from customers and/or Calgary Transit employees made by phone or through Calgary Transit Help Phones. Calls are dispatched by Calgary Transit employees through a centralized public safety unit which receives the calls. This unit is responsible for monitoring the over 350 closed-circuit (CCTV) television cameras placed throughout the CTrain system, and answering CTrain station Help phones.

Peace Officers also respond to incidents based on information from the public through Transit Watch, 3-1-1 and the City of Calgary Public Safety Communications.

With their regular proactive patrol activities, Peace Officers witness approximately 20 per cent of the crime and disorder incidents first-hand, which are incorporated into the Calgary Transit dataset.

The goal of proactive patrol is to anticipate problems in advance ensuring there are available Peace Officers nearby who can respond to the problem.

Calgary Transit Crime and Disorder Statistics: 2007-2008

Calgary Police Service Data

The Calgary Police Service data includes all recorded incidents occurring at Calgary Transit CTrain stations and adjoining parking lots. These recorded incidents include vehicle crimes which represent the single largest crime category. Citizens typically report this type of crime over the phone or through the Calgary Police Service online reporting system. In some instances, citizens may have attended Calgary Police Service Community District offices to report a vehicle crime.

The data also includes arrest reports submitted by Calgary Transit Peace Officers, which enables the Calgary Police Service to report crime according to Statistics Canada Uniform Crime Reporting Survey.

While every attempt is made to ensure only incidents occurring on Calgary Transit CTrain stations are included in the data, a small percentage of incidents occur on property adjacent to Calgary Transit stations and are included in the data. This may include a motor vehicle collision on a roadway between two CTrain Park and Ride lots (e.g. Franklin Station).

Calgary Police Service Statistics  (.PDF, 995KB)

Not all Incidents are Crimes

Crime rates are calculated using two methods. The first method, based on Statistics Canada reporting requirements called the Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) survey, reports ‘police-reported crime’ per 100,000 population. This information is available at the Statistics Canada website. The second method, utilized by many public transportation agencies, calculates ‘police-reported crime’ per one (1) million riders. This method allows for comparison of crime data between public transit systems.

An incident such as checking on the welfare or health of an individual is not counted as a crime unless charges are laid. The majority of incidents do not result in charges, however may impact the quality of transit customer trips. This includes the presence of intoxicated individuals.

Ridership, Crime and Disorder

  • Ridership increased 8.3 per cent from 2005 to 2006, 1.8 per cent from 2006 to 2007, and 5.6 per cent from 2007 to 2008.

  • ‘Crimes against persons’ per one million riders increased slightly each year from 2005 to 2007, peaking at a rate of 2.95 crimes per one million riders. In 2008, the rate dropped to 2.02 crimes per one million riders.

  • Despite a 5.6 per cent increase in ridership from 2007 to 2008, crime involving violence against persons (e.g. assaults) decreased from 2.95 (266 incidents) to 2.02 (195 incidents) crimes per one million riders. This represents the lowest number of person crimes in the last six years.

  • Calgary Transit Public Safety and Enforcement Peace Officers were involved in the following policing activities between 2007 and 2008:

    • In 2008, Peace Officers responded to 17 per cent more dispatched calls than in 2007. Peace Officers responded to 5,923 dispatched calls or incidents in 2008, up from 5,079 incidents in 2007.

    • In 2008, Calgary Transit Peace Officers reported 1,690 on-view incidents as a result of preventative patrol activities.

    • In 2008, Calgary Transit Peace Officers responded to a total of 7,780 incidents, an increase of 11 per cent over 2007 (7,003 incidents).

    • In 2008, the Calgary Police Service recorded 1,653 incidents on Calgary Transit properties, a decrease of 12 per cent from 1,862 incidents in 2007. The most common crime category was ‘vehicle-related crimes’ which represented 45 per cent (735 out of 1,653 incidents) of recorded incidents in 2008.

    • The top four most common calls for service in 2008 were:
      • Check on Welfare:  3436 calls (increase of 15 per cent from 2007)
      • Unwanted Patron:   1496 calls (increase of 44 per cent from 2007)
      • Subject Wanted:      688 calls (decrease of nine per cent from 2007)
      • Intoxicated Person:  607 calls (increase of 28 per cent from 2007)

Interpreting Calgary Transit Data

  • As of May 2007, all incidents recorded for downtown stations were reported under one category called “7 Avenue”. In 2009, statistics for each downtown CTrain station will be reported individually.

  • Stations such as Dalhousie, McKnight-Westwinds and Somerset/Bridlewood that are located at the end of the CTrain lines (“end-of-line” stations) have a higher number of incidents. This is due to the fact that they are the last stops before service ends and to avoid having operators respond to people still remaining on the trains, Peace Officers are deployed and are available to assist in these situations.

  • Outbound stations such as Sunnyside, Victoria Park/Stampede, and Bridgeland have a higher number of incidents because this is the start of the fare restricted zone.

  • Following categories defined:

    • Check on Welfare – Check on the health or well-being of an individual.

    • Sexual Assault – Unwanted touching (groping, molesting or rubbing against a person).

    • Subject Wanted – Peace Officers, in the course of their duties, determine an individual has a warrant for their arrest.

    • Unwanted Patron – An individual who is not using Calgary Transit for its intended purpose.

Vehicle Crime
  • A motor vehicle crime includes ‘attempt stolen’, ‘stolen vehicle’, ‘theft from vehicle’ and/or ‘damage vehicle’.

  • The number of offences per vehicle may fall under any of the four categories listed above. For example, an incident that involves a vehicle being broken into and contents stolen represents two crimes counted against that vehicle.

  • Vehicle crime statistics may include vehicles which were parked in non-Calgary Transit designated parking stalls. For example, shopping centre parking stalls situated near CTrain stations.

  • At year end 2008, Calgary Transit operated 14,126 parking stalls throughout the CTrain system.

  • Overall ‘vehicle-related crimes’ decreased by 13 per cent between 2007 and 2008 (847 vehicle crimes in 2007 to 735 in 2008).

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