The weekly report from the Greensboro Police Department (GPD) shows that violent crime continues to be down from 2020.
However, the number of homicides is creeping up closer to the figures for 2020, when the city had 61 homicides during the year – an all-time high.
During the reporting week, which was Sunday, Sept. 26 through Saturday, Oct. 2, there were no homicides reported. However in 2021 there have been 36 homicides compared to 42 during the same period of 2020. There have also been 829 aggravated assaults with a firearm compared to 915 during the same period in 2020.
While homicides are down this year, both traffic fatalities and drug overdose deaths are up in 2021. Through Oct. 2, 2021 there have been 38 traffic fatalities in Greensboro compared to 28 during the same time period in 2020. The number of pedestrians traffic fatalities has almost doubled from last year with 13 in 2021 compared to 7 during the same period in 2020.
There have been 101 deaths from drug overdoses in Greensboro through Oct. 2 compared to 85 during the same period in 2020.
The number of gun seizures by the Greensboro Police Department is up significantly this year with 1,419 in 2021 compared to 823 in 2020.
The GPD continues to struggle with a high vacancy rate. According to the report, on Oct. 4 the GPD had 108 vacancies. That figure includes 56 not fully trained and assigned personnel, which includes officers currently enrolled in the Police Academy, those who are pre-hires and those in field training as well as lateral hires who have not completed their training or been assigned.
Of the 52 vacancies remaining, 11 are for non-sworn positions and 41 are vacancies in sworn positions.
Because of the high number of vacancies, the GPD has implemented supplemental patrol assistance with officers from across the department answering calls in place of their regular assignments.
I feel sorry for our Police People. Understaffed and often unappreciated.
The court system could do them a huge favor and prosecute offenders to the full extent of the law instead of dumping criminals right back onto the streets.
Officers, you are in my prayers.
It will continue to worsen until we are able to elect competent public officials. Those citizens who have the means to do so will move away because of high crime rates; those who cannot will suffer most.It is those voters who will have to turn the tide.
Not a good situation to be in if they cannot elect responsible representatives. Chicago.
How many crimes solved because of Crimestoppers greensboro/guilford county.
No surprise with the anti- police council. Murders go up, Cure for Violence keeps taking money, Councilwoman Johnson has no accountability to the citizens of GSO. Council allows riots, violence, destruction of property to occur while giving orders to police not to interfere.
Why would anyone want to work for GPD. Chief is walking on egg shells so as not to be fired? Chief you need to tell council this is your department. They hired you to do a job, not be a puppet like Chief Scott was. ( Afraid of loosing his pension)
What did I forget?
This is why: https://www.greensboro-nc.gov/government/city-council
Change these faces and it might begin to improve.
I feel that many young people do not want to get involved in a profession that has a 40% approval rating, maybe less than that. Given what has taken place all across the country the last couple of years and the way law enforcement officers have been treated I don’t blame the young people at all. Same thing in Greensboro. Very little respect by many citizens and little support from the city council. Who wants to be a member of an organization that is viewed as a necessary evil by the elite and for such meager pay. Nope, no wonder there are so many vacancies.
I have a LOT of respect for law enforcement. There would be a LOT of positive response if we were to treat these men and women with respect for putting their lives on the line for us.
Leave them to do their job. Pay them well.
Agencies like GPD are in trouble. People do not want to go in to law enforcement. The department has an antiquated manner of promotions and transfers that do not reflect the best candidates-they choose based on demographics and good old boy system. The reputation of the agency is horrible locally. City council is giving a token salary adjustment that still leaves the largest department in the county last in salary. They recycle the same tired ideas or programs from other agencies if they implement any adjustments for policing at all.
There is a lack of progressive thinking or acceptance of new ideas. Still no take home cars because our council refuses to see the benefit vs cost.
Good luck. They are going to need it.
Well said. Same treatment they give teachers and they act shocked that public service jobs are so hard to fill here.
Police Officer’s job has become a profession that by going to work and doing their job is highly likely to put their freedom and reputation in danger. Who else is our society by just going to work and doing their job has this fear of to deal with every day. Racism and crime has become the norm now. The police is now the criminal as society is told. And society WILL suffer for the actions for this behavior. There is NO positive outcome.
I appreciate your use of the word “profession” but policing is not really a profession. In NC you have to be 21 years old, not a felon, 10th grade reading level, and high school diploma or GED. A four year degree does not factor into the promotional process or hiring process (especially now). Professions like doctors or lawyers have to possess advanced degrees. Social workers in NC must have a Master’s degree to work. Teachers must posses a degree, once specifically in education, but now school systems accept lateral entry with other degrees. That is how municipalities get away with not paying officers like a profession. Also, when you hire a 21 year old with a 10th grade reading level, what kind of service to the public is to be expected? Good decisions? Proper application of the Constitution? Good supervision of new officers once the officer starts to achieve rank?
I am for police reform. But not the kind of reform cited by media and activists. Cities need to be committed to making agencies have well trained, above minimum standards, appropriately supervised officers. The reason you are seeing issues between the public and police departments often lands in the middle. Yes, the public often contributes to the questionable uses of force and problems between communities and police. However, agencies could make things better by handling their staff like private corporations. Start rewarding officers by merit. The last chief took the department back to the 1980s with his love of everyone kissing his ass and his punishment of those that did not. This chief will tread water until he retires. This is what the City Council wants. They do not want reform. They do not want an above average department because that means the agency is not operated based on the political whims of the few. They do not want critical thinking.
Another homicide today. I do not have the statistics for demographics but I do not need them. The majority of the victims are young, black males. Part of the issue is the cultural rot we have in every segment of our society that glorifies stupid TikTok videos and fake Instagram. Part of the issue is that our elected leaders (looking at you Hightower) in the areas most affected by crime and blight are more concerned with grandstanding than getting their hands dirty and addressing the real issues. The school system sucks, parents are not responsible for their children’s basic needs, and throwing more money down the drain is not helping. Most officers, due to the political issues around law enforcement, are counting days and passing time. One thing the Council has accomplished is that their employees (not all, but a great percentage) do not care. Police know they will be thrown to the wolves.
I am from the southeast side of town. My family still lives there (Hightower’s district). I am intimately aware of the issues through living in it and education. I did not go to Grimsley, Page, or private school. There were no charter schools or magnets to escape to then. I have given up on this city, the police department, or the political structure to ever change in Greensboro. They do not want change because that is what keeps them in power. 70 and 80 year olds who have been on the Council or some commission forever. They are the problem and we keep voting them in.
How many officers in GSO have lost their freedom Martin?
The freedom to be respected, the freedom to be appreciated, the freedom to have US support them, and for US to care how they feel. OUR actions in how we respond to them and their sincere efforts to do their job is important to ALL of US. They MATTER and soo do WE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
They have all those freedom Martin. So do the people that would like to see police reform move a bit faster. That is what makes America great!
Don’t be obtuse Chris. Unless you have lived in oblivion since Ferguson, you know there is a national push against policing, mainly promoted by the Democrat party. The concern is not that there have been GPD employees charged with anything, but the overshadowing threat that it could happen.
Who wants to go to work every day knowing that every decision they make will be micro-analyzed using the 20-20 vision of hindishlght to decide if what the officer did was in OK. And by OK, I don’t mean that it was necessarily right or wrong, rather it was what city council and other loud left wing voices wanted to happen in that moment.
Policing should not be subject to the whims of the loudest voices, nor should it be judged by the opinions of those who have the luxury to decide what was best from the comfort of their easy chairs. An officer, who makes a controversial but legal decision, should not be tried in the court of public opinion and forced to relocate and end their career like Darren Wilson had to do in Ferguson.
Go do a ride along, so you can see what it’s like. Better yet, go apply and make a positive difference.
I agree that public opinion is always skewed. The investigation of officers should be more public though as they are public servants. The addition of fancy mobile phones with ability to live stream officers engaging with the public means that the police leaderships needs to be just as innovative and quick in sharing the full context of these engagements and take a more public stance on what is right AND wrong in police engagements with the public.
I have great respect for the difficult challenge officers face dealing with the worst of our public on a day to day basis. It is the leadership that lets these ‘investigations’ linger in social media too long.
It is harder to be a cop today I imagine with the public eye live streaming everyday. Some officers are up for it. Others are not. But their freedom is no more pressured today than in the past. It is just more public now. Their leadership needs to get with the times.
Look up former officer Charlotte Jackson who was involved in the Dejuan Yourse case. She resigned after a city council member (I believe Hightower but do not quote me on that) called out her and the other officer from the dais with little information on the substance of the call. Mr. Yourse was given money by City Council as settlement for an excessive use of force ($95,000). The use of force by the other officer may have been excessive (punching), however, when a council member calls you out before the investigation is complete it puts the officer in an untenable situation with the public. Mr.Yourse was then convicted on assaulting his pregnant girlfriend and violently assaulting a juvenile pizza clerk. He was sentenced to a little over 11 years.
Jackson did not use questionable force on Mr. Yourse but considering she resigned after being called out I would consider that she did not receive her proper administrative rights in an administrative investigation or 4th amendment right to proper due process. There is no way that a council member making statements like this about an unadjudicated case would provide the foundation for a proper hearing. Just like joe Biden saying the Border Patrol agents would face consequences for using horse reins. I would argue a forced loss of job is a loss of freedom. However, you cannot dictate that individuals respect you (in any type of job) or appreciate you, especially when the entity that an officer works for does not respect the officer through pay or benefits at the minimum. There is a leadership vacuum in Greensboro in important parts of the government. It trickles from city council to the city managers to department heads. It is a systemic problem. There is no cure as long as we keep voting the same people in. I repeat, I am for reform in all levels of policing. But you cannot hire yes men with their eye on a chief’s retirement and no innovative thinking for that reform to occur. That is true in all agencies.
Carefully look at the credentials of some of the assistant city managers and department heads. Some do not have degrees relevant to their job and may have skipped to levels to be an assistant city manager.
**14th amendment due process
I have been endorsed by the nearly 600 members of the Greensboro Police Officers Associations and four former GPD Chiefs because I want to prioritize public safety. Unlike the current council with misplaced priorities. This will not be corrected overnight but when we start with a $620,000,000 budget let’s put public safety on the top of the list. Salaries adjusted, take home cars, and let the Chief run his department. We’re training officers and losing them to much smaller departments. Lots of work to be done and I’m ready to get started on day one.
Sorry Tony, unless you commit to actually making a real change you are a retread, just like Matheny and Barber. You have to look at hiring and promotional processes within all areas of city government.