Police layoffs in New Jersey will result in more crimes and increased costs to residents, says a report, confirming media reports of a rise in crime rates in certain cities of the state.
From a social or economic perspective, police layoffs in five high-crime New Jersey cities are irrational since the costs that they impose are 12.9 times greater than the costs they save, said a report by Economic Policy Institute on Tuesday.
These costs include those incurred by the communities and their residents, crime victims and their families, and property owners and businesses.
The estimated total annual cost arising from increasing crime attributable to police layoffs in the five high-crime cities (Camden, Irvington, Trenton, Newark, and Paterson) is $36. 4 billion, while the cities’ estimated budgetary savings are $2.8 billion, says the report.
In total, across the five cities, we can expect annually 34 more murders, nine more forcible rapes, 527 more robberies, 290 more aggravated assaults, 549 more burglaries, 260 more larcenies, and 479 more motor vehicle thefts as a result of police layoffs, the institute said.
Camden can see the greatest growth in violent crime and the property crimes of burglary, and larceny, while Newark can expect the largest increase in vehicle thefts arising from the reduction in police force levels.
Camden witnessed 2,380 violent crimes per 100,000 residents in 2009, which was more than five times the national average, the FBI said.
Violent crimes including homicides, shootings, and assaults were up 21 percent in Newark in the first quarter of 2011 compared with the same period in 2010, the report said, quoting the Star-Ledger.
The greatest cost to the community, crime victims, families, residents, property owners, and businesses will be borne by Camden, which faces an estimated $12.1 billion in tangible and intangible costs of crime.
Because the city was able to save an estimated $5.65 million in its budget, the net loss for the residents of Camden attributable to police layoffs is $11.55 billion.
Newark laid off 167 police officers, while Camden initially laid off 163 police officers, but was able to rehire 50 of them, the report said.