Bethesda Police District Sees Most Crime Drop In 2013

Montgomery County police carThe Montgomery County Police District that covers Bethesda, Chevy Chase and North Bethesda saw decreases in most crime categories in 2013 compared to 2012, according to the district commander.

Capt. Dave Falcinelli told Chevy Chase residents at a town hall meeting with Councilmember Roger Berliner last week that the area saw double-digit percentage drops in robberies, aggravated assaults, residential burglaries, thefts from vehicles and stolen vehicles in 2013 compared to 2012.

But commercial burglaries — mostly overnight break-ins at retail, restaurant or office spaces — were up almost 44 percent. Falcinelli attributed that large increase to a Prince George’s County man who was sentenced to 18 years in prison for three office burglaries. Police claimed he was responsible for a string of more than a dozen burglaries in White Flint and downtown Bethesda.

Falcinelli said robberies were down 12 percent, aggravated assaults were down 55 percent, residential burglaries were down 14 percent, thefts from vehicles were down 13 percent and stolen vehicles were down 20 percent in 2013 compared to 2012.

One resident, who claimed she was the victim of the Dec. 30 armed robbery in the Kenwood Forest townhouse complex, told Falcinelli and Berliner that private property owners should be required to provide more lighting for nearby neighborhoods.

Montgomery County Police redrew the department’s police district map for 2013. The 2nd District, headquartered in downtown Bethesda, now includes Potomac. The area extends from the Chevy Chase/Silver Spring line west to the Potomac River and north to Montrose Road, commonly held as the dividing line between North Bethesda and Rockville.

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