The Baguio City Police Office clarified to Malacañang Thursday the city remains to be peaceful and the increase in the city’s crime volume was due to a shift in the system of recording incidents.
BCPO Director Jesus Cambay Jr. said they shifted from using the Unit Crime Periodic Report (UCPER) to blotter-based crime reporting starting July last year in a bid to reflect the real crime situation in the city.
Cambay said using the UCPER system, police stations will only report cases that were actually investigated and that cases such as traffic incidents, barangay cases, incidents for record purposes only, and cases involving children in conflict with the law are not included in the tabulation of total crime volume.
He said the crime volume in the city was lower from January to June 2012 compared to the same period in 2011 when BCPO was using the UCPER system.
But when BCPO shifted from UCPER to blotter-based crime reporting, even traffic incidents and other cases not previously reported are now being tabulated in the city’s total crime volume.
He reported the shift in reporting incidents reflected some 2,977 incidents recorded from July to December last year.
“The incidents recorded were results of honest reporting using the geographical information system-based crime analysis where the true crime situation is reflected using the technology,” he said.
He added, “Baguio remains one of the most peaceful cities and we shall aim to reflect or report all actual incidents so that BCPO will give the right solutions to peace and order concerns.”
The BCPO director said the recording of all incidents is also consistent with the GIS-based crime analysis developed by the Police Regional Office-Cordillera, which requires recording of all incidents in a bid to determine crime trends, crime hotspots, and the time of the day or night crimes are committed.
Cambay said BCPO has already devised anti-crime strategies and interventions to address the crime situation in the city.
These strategies include the shift from service-oriented policing to customer satisfaction-oriented policing; police presence and visibility; apprehension and monitoring of go-after motorcycle-riding criminals; conduct of dragnet operations; installation of Oplan Tangguyob information operation plan; and resumption of frisking for deadly weapons.
Cambay also revived when he assumed post the “Simple Things” program that reminds the police force to make themselves approachable to citizens through proper decorum and appearance, among other reminders.
The new crime laboratory building was also inaugurated at the BCPO compound last week.