City Beat

News, insight and discussion on Sacramento and its neighborhoods

September 23, 2011
Crime in Sacramento continues to drop, despite budget cuts

Mirroring a trend seen in most other big cities across California, crime in Sacramento is down by 18 percent since 2007 - despite four straight years of public safety cutbacks.

Police Chief Rick Braziel told the City Council this week the drop in total serious crime was the third largest in the state over that time period, behind only San Diego and Oakland. And year to date, crime is down in the city 12.5 percent over last year, Braziel said.

But with the department just three months removed from laying off 42 cops, Braziel and others are skeptical those trends will continue.

In an interview Thursday evening, Braziel told me "our goal is to keep driving the numbers down, but no matter what we do, the ability to drive the numbers down is less than it was before (the layoffs)."

"But the budget is the budget and we can't blame it," he said. "The community didn't create the financial crisis, so there is no one to blame. We have to adapt."

The City Council in June voted to lay off 42 officers - an unprecedented move in Sacramento - to help fill its budget deficit. Many council members have indicated they wanted police personnel to begin contributing to their pensions to avoid cuts, but so far, no progress has been made in those talks.

It's too early to tell if those layoffs will affect crime in the city, Braziel said. He plans to give an update on crime figures in the coming months.

Police Chief Rick Braziel and Mayor Kevin Johnson at a press conference last year. Bee staff photo by Andy Alfaro

About Comments

Reader comments on are the opinions of the writer, not The Sacramento Bee. If you see an objectionable comment, click the "report abuse" button below it. We will delete comments containing inappropriate links, obscenities, hate speech, and personal attacks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. See more about comments here.

What You Should Know About Comments on is happy to provide a forum for reader interaction, discussion, feedback and reaction to our stories. However, we reserve the right to delete inappropriate comments or ban users who can't play nice. (See our full terms of service here.)

Here are some rules of the road:

• Keep your comments civil. Don't insult one another or the subjects of our articles. If you think a comment violates our guidelines click the "report abuse" button to notify the moderators. Responding to the comment will only encourage bad behavior.

• Don't use profanities, vulgarities or hate speech. This is a general interest news site. Sometimes, there are children present. Don't say anything in a way you wouldn't want your own child to hear.

• Do not attack other users; focus your comments on issues, not individuals.

• Stay on topic. Only post comments relevant to the article at hand. If you want to discuss an issue with a specific user, click on his profile name and send him a direct message.

• Do not copy and paste outside material into the comment box.

• Don't repeat the same comment over and over. We heard you the first time.

• Do not use the commenting system for advertising. That's spam and it isn't allowed.

• Don't use all capital letters. That's akin to yelling and not appreciated by the audience.

You should also know that The Sacramento Bee does not screen comments before they are posted. You are more likely to see inappropriate comments before our staff does, so we ask that you click the "report abuse" button to submit those comments for moderator review. You also may notify us via email at Note the headline on which the comment is made and tell us the profile name of the user who made the comment. Remember, comment moderation is subjective. You may find some material objectionable that we won't and vice versa.

If you submit a comment, the user name of your account will appear along with it. Users cannot remove their own comments once they have submitted them, but you may ask our staff to retract one of your comments by sending an email to Again, make sure you note the headline on which the comment is made and tell us your profile name.

hide comments

On October 14, The Sacramento Bee will temporarily remove commenting from While we design the upgrade, we encourage you to tell us what you like and don't like about commenting on and other websites. We've heard from hundreds of you already and we're listening. Please continue to add your thoughts and questions here. We also encourage you to write Letters to the Editor on this and other topics.

About City Beat

Ryan Lillis has covered the city of Sacramento, its 108 neighborhoods and its politicians since 2008. Prior to that, he covered crime at The Bee. A native of upstate New York, Lillis has a journalism degree from the University of California, Berkeley.

Contact reporter Ryan Lillis at


Does the Kings' poor performance of late impact the arena work?

Ryan Lillis on Twitter

Follow "Ryan_Lillis" on Twitter

October 2013

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
    1 2 3 4 5
6 7 8 9 10 11 12
13 14 15 16 17 18 19
20 21 22 23 24 25 26
27 28 29 30 31    

Sacramento City Resources

City Web Sites

How to contact city officials