Union Police Chief Norman Brune Monday told aldermen that the city of Union is safe place to live.
That is in response to a question posed by Alderman Jim Albrecht concerning Brune’s monthly report to the board.
Brune prepares a report to aldermen that lists the number of reports in all crime categories.
Albrecht pointed out that there were 17 assaults in Union during November, three kidnappings reported and increases in stealing reports and drug cases.
He also pointed out three reports of making a terrorist threat.
“I have to inquire if Union is a safe place to live?” Albrecht asked.
Brune explained that the reports don’t always reflect actual crime stats.
For example, Brune noted that the kidnapping charges involved family members, or parental kidnappings.
“All three were domestic issues between husbands and wives,” he said. “They were resolved without charges.”
Brune said, many of the assaults also are domestic disputes that don’t always lead to charges.
“About half of them were domestic and all of them were third-degree assault,” said Brune, “which means there were very minor injuries.”
Stealing, Drug Charges
According to Brune, many of the stealings reports were minor thefts.
“Generally those are stealing from vehicles,” he said. “I don’t think it is one area over another — the stealing are occurring across the board.”
Furthermore, the drug charges mostly occur during a traffic stop.
“It is pretty much happenstance — none of these were major arrests,” Brune said. “All of the drug charges are from marijuana this month.”
Brune added that a slight increase in some crimes is not an indicator of growing danger in Union.
“I don’t think this month there is any real increase in serious incidents whatsoever,” he said.
City Administrator Russell Rost, who served as a law enforcement officer and police chief for several years, said economic crunches that come during the holiday season often lead to a spike in crime.
“This is the peak of domestic violence,” said Rost. “There tends to be a bit more stress during those times.”
Brune said most terrorist threats reports are the result of threats written on notes or walls at schools or businesses.
“That is when someone makes a threat that they intend to inflict injury, or disruption at a business or school,” said Brune. “Two of them were written on a wall in a school.”