Rapid City mayor & police chief talks about crime in the city

RAPID CITY, S.D.(KOTA)- On Wednesday, Rapid City Mayor Steve Allender and Police Chief Don Hedrick took to the City Council chambers to discuss the current state of crime in Rapid City.

Looking at the numbers finds something of a mixed bag, with a defined spike in crime through Covid, while many of those figures fell for the 2021 year.

For example – compared to 2020, crimes like aggravated assault and robbery are down 9 percent and 28 percent, while murders increased by 25 percent in 2021.

Allender offered his take on the situation as it stands.

Allender said there is misinformation floating around regarding the local crime situation, and encouraged residents to look at the facts.

Allender also cited social isolation, deep political divisions, and lack of access to addiction treatment as contributing factors.

Allender said misinformation has circulated regarding the local jail population and grant money, and advocated for more police staffing and early childhood education.

Joining Rapid City Mayor Steve Allender for Wednesday’s “State of Law Enforcement in Rapid City” conference was Rapid City Police Department Chief Don Hedrick.

Hedrick used his time at the podium to focus on the numbers.

However, Rapid City did still outpace other, larger metropolitan areas regarding total murders in 2021 – tallying 15 compared to Sioux Falls’ 5 and Fargo’s 6.

Hedrick, while specifically referencing the North Rapid community, said stay tuned for coming developments in your neighborhood.

Also highlighted was the partnership between the RCPD and Journey On, which Hedrick commented on.

Total violent crimes numbered 686 in 2021, representing a 12% drop over 2020.