Report: Edmonds sees increase in property crime, fraud in 2020

Washington state saw a rise in crimes — including fraud, murder and manslaughter  — in 2020, according to a report issued by the Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs (WASPC).

The annual report is based on data collected by more than 200 law enforcement agencies across the state. WASPC said the report is intended to give residents, elected leaders and law enforcement agencies information about crime in their communities.

In Edmonds, overall crime also rose by 41.3%, which Acting Assistant Chief Josh McClure said it was largely due to a spike in property-related crimes. The department received 962 criminal complaints in 2020; of those, 918 were property-related offenses, McClure said.

According to the report, Edmonds saw a 195.9% rise in the number of fraud complaints. McClure said most of the fraud reports involved residents falling victim to a phone scam.

“This is a trend that all law enforcement agencies have been experiencing,” he said.

Also in 2020, burglaries in Edmonds rose by 50%, thefts increased by 27.7% and vehicle thefts went up 79.2%, according to the report. According to McClure, these were “crimes of opportunity.”

The Edmonds Police Department is in the final stages of hiring a community engagement coordinator, which McClure said will help address these sorts of crimes through community meetings, training and education programs.

“The Edmonds Police Department remains committed to providing essential safety services to our community,” he said.

According to the report. two murders were reported in Edmonds in 2020 — one more than in 2019. Ninety-one DUIs were also listed. That was a drop from 2019, which had 122 DUI incidents.

Based on the statewide report, there was a 7.1% increase in Group A crimes, which includes crimes against persons, property and society. There were also 302 murders reported in the state in 2020 — a 46% increase from last year. However, the report also noted that overall, violent crimes were down this year compared to 2019.

Fraud saw the largest increase at 131.3% with 59,134 offenses in 2020. The significant increase in fraud activity in 2020 was due to fraudulent unemployment claims, according to WASPC.

Burglaries across the state also rose 17.2%, with 41,638 in 2020 compared to 35,526 in 2019, the report states. 

Domestic violence offenses made up 49.7% of all crimes against persons and 2.7% of all crimes against property. A total of 59,289 domestic violence offenses were reported. Of that, 13,909 involved violations of a court-issued protection or no-contact order.

According to the state report, 22,070 drivers were arrested for DUI, including 172 juveniles. In addition, there were 8,200 arrests for drug-related crimes. Of that, 4.2% were under 18 years of age.

WASPC also reported that hate crimes across the state decreased — from 559 reported crimes in 2019 to 468 in 2020.

According to the report, there were 5,432 sexual offenses reported in 2020, involving 5,432 victims and 5,026 offenders.

Statewide, crimes were most frequently reported in August and least frequently reported in April, according to WASPC.

–By Cody Sexton

  1. The property crime increase is a direct result of coddling vagrants. I know this won’t get posted, but hey you never know.

    1. True. I have found this newspaper to be quite fair and transparent. Also, non partisan. I respect this paper and Tereas Whipple.

  2. well, with the insipid support of the anti police culture in this state, particularly among the leftist in the city of edmonds, including the partisan leftist mayor and several city council members, there just could be a direct correlation with the increase of crime.

    1. To Ray Oram

      What is needed is positive, specific ideas how to correct the situation. I suggest that finger-pointing and one-size-fits-all blame-gaming do little to help. I suppose I’m a “leftist,” though goodness knows what that really means (it’s a good word for conjuring up vague conspiracies and subversive activities, I guess.) Most of my friends are Democrats, but I do not know a single one who is anti-police. In fact, one very Democratic family have a son-in-law who is a policeman, and he’s a liberal as well.

      Criticize the mayor and his policies all you like, but let’s be specific in our criticisms, and let’s please stop dividing each other into monolithic blocs, supposedly all locked into thinking in the same. We’re people, neighbors, folks with our own opinions based on our own equally legitimate life experiences. If we make efforts to understand each other, respect each other, we can perhaps work together to make some progress. Pigeon-holing people we don’t know, and generalizing – these drive us apart and make solutions needlessly difficult

      (Note that I have avoided the temptation to hint about “rightists”.)

      1. Nathaniel, your Democrat friends protested Kavanaugh appointment at the PCC, but coasted on local issues. You voted for this. This isn’t a finger pointing moment so much as a soul searching and opportunity for self reflection.

        1. You said this exactly as it really is Matt! You speak for many of we who are sick to death of this one-way thinking. Self-Reflection is definitely what the leftist Democrats need to be doing. They have made a mess of Edmonds, just look at Seattle to see what decades of Democrats have done to the entire PNW.

        2. You have no idea what my friends did or did not do, nor how they voted. In fact, you miss the point entirely, which was that broad assumptions and generalities and finger pointing do not lend themselves to creative, positive solutions.

      2. To me it seems a Leftist Progressive is a person who does want a Socialist Society. We would call for instance AOC and Bernie Sanders Leftists progressive and even Socialists. We would call Bill Clinton a Democrat. We would call Joe Biden a Democrat.
        So it seems that if people here supported and still support fans of Seattle’s demise… and the anarchy still allowed there. Infact invite them here and use them to campaign etc…That candidate is probably an extreme progressive. Remember that too…
        I agree with what you are saying but maybe if you are a regular Democrat and not a Socialist wanna be you should refer to yourself as a Democrat… Otherwise everyone thinks you are a L wing agenda type. I have always stated I am a Democrat. I consider myself a bit of centrist in my thinking as I see both sides of much of todays woes. The worlds woes.
        In the Seattle Times I read just today that “An increasing number of Restaurants and Bars are now requiring proof of vaccination for entry.” This is Seattle so I would think the Democrats here and the progressives would agree on that. As I would suspect that some not all Republicans particularly far Right as they are often described would resist this. Some honestly don’t believe the Science and some just don’t like the party trying to enforce masks and mandates because they are afraid of progressives. I personally don’t like anarchist on either side… Both sides have them.
        So be transparent. Be sure you know who you are voting for and be sure to know what you really want to see for our futures here in Edmonds and frankly the whole West Coast of America. If you care. I care.

      3. We have been specific Nathaniel; everyday the comments are full of specifics of the bad governing under Mike Nelson and the Gang of Four.

        1. Please go back and read my original post. As it happens, I’m appalled by the actions and deafness of the mayor and the council, as well the state’s treatment of police and crime.

          Specifics? Yes, there have been many, but there have also been some pretty broad and judgmental statements about our fellow Edmonds neighbors (cf. Matt Richardson, above).

          If you re-read what I actually wrote, I object to lumping people together as monolithic “leftists,” or for that matter “rightists.” We work better if we avoid broad generalizations and presuming to know exactly how others may have voted, what their motives are, and so on. We win more discussions by listening than by shutting whole groups out because of what we think they may have done, or what we presume they think, or how we guess they may have voted.

          And I’ll stand by that.

        2. But Nat, you have been doing this also, re-read your own post. Many things you said, in the past, about those that dont think like you. Perhaps “standing by something” is to admit we all throw a little mud when it suits us.

      4. Nate, I see you are trying to put some effort here in unifying the group…but…when you say “pigeon-holing people we don’t know” you must not be familiar with local gov’t. I think it would be in your best interest to “get to know” not what is presented to you in terms of a “social veneer” but the real behind the scenes agenda. The push for increased density in Edmonds, (already allotted 3,300 units on Aurora and the push to eliminate Single Family Zoning you might find the real agenda behind the whole thing is from UN Agenda 21/2030. Did you know the mayor takes his playbook from this and our governor? I bet not. If you think the Mayor and some council have Edmonds best interest in mind, think again. Density, density, density, will bring increased crime!!!!! People don’t like living on top of each other! If we think crime has gotten worse in Edmonds, just wait for the fireworks if we don’t get our gov’t under control !

    2. Of course. Deterrents have always been my idea of good ways to teach a lesson. Many, then don’t repeat that mistake, crime etc. Without penalties for illegal behavior of course there will be more crime, more disrespect…and a ill do what I want attitude.

  3. Interesting how crime has risen so rapidly since Officer Lawless was eliminated from the force.
    Just coincidence? Maybe if you believe in coincidence.

    1. Hard to tell. I don’t know what type of relationship Mayor had with Chief Lawless. It’s hard to figure out. Why did Lawless agree to stay for so long…? I mean I found all of that odd. Maybe he did stay to protect us…There are so many non disclosed arrangements made in this town its ridiculous. Transparency had to be forced to get some here.
      It’s all about November to me. I do believe a complete turn around in the City Council should be expected.
      I personally believe Postiin 1 will go to Kristiana Johnson. Position 2 probably Cass.(at this point). That could change…

    2. The local gov’t agenda is to allow more crime is to ultimately enforce more gov’t control!!!! Did you catch the “community engagement coordinator” employment comment. What’s this person going to do….go out and “reason” with the criminals!!!!! Ridiculous.

      The fact that so many property violations are occurring means that some folks are not doing their jobs. Why? Who is controlling them doing their jobs? Is it the mayor? How much influence and control does he have over them? Who does the police chief take orders from? Are their hands being tied in anyway? If so, by whom? These are things we need to get to the bottom of because since crime is on the rise…..why is that? Are there people in our community that weren’t here before? Where are they coming from? Are we going to become like Seattle? Who are our politicians taking their advice from? Answers to all of these questions will lead to more truth. Seattle is known as “FREE-ATTLE”. Our local gov’t, some are downright criminals, breaking our laws, “don’t care about the people” attitude. Sick!

  4. “WASPC also reported that hate crimes across the state decreased — from 559 reported crimes in 2019 to 468 in 2020.”

    Mike Nelson, how is this possible, you and AFM label Edmonds as Racist and filled with hate crimes? Obviously, someone does not know what they are talking about. All bets, are on City Hall….

    1. Matt, how do you find these things? Great laugh in the middle of the day! The gag reaction certainly was contagious…….

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