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5 Things to Know: Mid-Year Crime Stats See Violent Crime Down

...and four more stories from July 9-15

Mid-Year Crime Stats See Violent Crime Down

CMPD released its mid-year crime stats this week, showing a drop in violent crime overall as compared to last year. While it should be noted that a comparison of two consecutive years does not necessarily indicate a meaningful trend, the stats do give a snapshot of what issues communities around Charlotte are dealing with in terms of reported crime.

According to CMPD’s crime stats, violent crime is down 8% overall, with declines in every major category including homicides (down 15%), robberies (down 14%), rape (down 26%), and aggravated assaults (down 5%).

As violent crime has been on the decline, property crime, and specifically auto thefts, continue to drive up the overall crime rate.

Between Jan. 1 and June 30, overall crime went up 11% in Charlotte as compared to the same time period last year. The main driver of this increase has been auto thefts, according to CMPD, which has seen a skyrocketing increase in the number of Hyundai and Kia car thefts due to a social media challenge targeting these vehicles that emerged in 2022. To date, CMPD has seen auto thefts increase by 143 compared to the same time period last year.

“In fact, if we exclude auto thefts from the equation, both this year and last, the overall crime rate would actually show a decrease of 0.4%,” said CMPD Deputy Chief Steven Brochu.

While there were no homicides in Charlotte this week, the city did see a violent weekend last week, as three people were murdered in separate incidents on the afternoon of Saturday, July 8. Queen City Nerve has tracked 48 murders this far in 2023 in Charlotte as of Friday, compared to 59 at the same time last year.

City Looks to Redevelop Three Corridor-of-Opportunity Sites

The city announced Thursday that it is accepting proposals for the redevelopment of three city-owned properties within three respective Corridors of Opportunity.

“The three properties identified for redevelopment are strategically located within the corridors and offer a unique opportunity to contribute to the vision of an inclusive and dynamic city that enhances the quality of life for its residents,” read a release on Thursday afternoon.

A rundown, two-story motel located on the Sugar Creek corridor.
This motel on the Sugar Creek corridor will soon be demolished after Charlotte City Council approved a deal to purchase the land at an April meeting. (Courtesy Google Maps)

The three properties are as follows: The Economy Inn, a former hotel site on Reagan Drive that spans 4.33 acres adjacent to the Hidden Valley neighborhood and the I-85/Sugar Creek interchange; the former Double Oaks school, located at 1326 Woodward Ave., on an 11.2-acre parcel off Statesville Avenue between the Brightwalk, Genesis Park and Park at Oaklawn neighborhoods; and the former site of a strip mall at the corner of West Boulevard and Remount Road. The city acquired that .84-acre property to prevent federal forfeiture in 2022.

At a meeting in April, Charlotte City Council purchased the two parcels on Reagan Drive that previously served as the site of Economy and Budget Inn Motel for a total of $4.2 million, plus a $1-million investment in demolishing those motel buildings to prepare for redevelopment and rehousing the long-term tenants there.

The reduction of motel rooms at the interchange of Sugar Creek and I-85 is part of a plan by the city to reduce violent transactional crime in the area.

Cross Charlotte Trail Segment Set to Connect NoDa to SC

A new segment of the Cross Charlotte Trail stretching from Park Road Shopping Center to Tyvola Road is set to open on July 27, the city announced this week. The 1.54-mile-long segment fills a gap in the CCT/Little Sugar Creek Greenway, soon allowing users to travel from NoDa to the South Carolina state line.

Phase One
The South Charlotte Connector of the Cross Charlotte Trail features boardwalks and a bridge. It was completed in 2020. (Photo courtesy of City of Charlotte)

The segment cost $26 million to build, including planning and design, acquiring right-of-way, utility relocation, consultant fees, construction, signalization, permits and landscaping.

The Cross Charlotte Trail is a 30-mile trail and greenway facility that, once completed, will stretch from Pineville through Center City and on to the UNC Charlotte campus and Cabarrus County line. Approximately 140,000 residents and 130,000 jobs will be within walking distance of the proposed trail and the adjacent greenways that connect to it one finished.

With five segments currently completed, six more are currently still in progress.

Tim Moore Won’t Seek Sixth Term as House Speaker

N.C. House Speaker Tim Moore confirmed on Friday that he won’t seek another term in his leadership role. The five two-year terms he has served is a record for North Carolina. Moore, who succeeded now-U.S. Sen. Thom Tillis for the House leadership in 2015, has said he had informed his colleagues of the decision about a year ago.

Moore, who has helped to push through an extremely conservative agenda as House speaker, was recently sued by a local Republican elected official who claimed Moore ruined his marriage by carrying out an affair with the plaintiff’s wife and engaging in sexual activity with other people seeking his political favor.

That matter has been resolved, according to attorneys.

North Tryon Fire Believed to Be Intentional

A large fire at a former body shop on North Tryon Street just outside of NoDa is believed to have been intentionally set, according to the Charlotte Fire Department. No one was injured in the fire at the property, which is now vacant.

A vacant warehouse abalze
A fire on North Tryon Street on Thursday is believed to have been intentionally set. (Photo courtesy of Charlotte FD)

According to CFD, it took 45 firefighters about 90 minutes to battle the blaze. CFD asked that anyone with information about who set the blaze call CrimeStoppers at 704-334-1600.

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