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Sidney by the Sea has had a significant rise in property crime during the first half of 2019, the highest numbers seen in the community in six years, according to RCMP.

Mounties submitted their crime summary for the first half of the year to Sidney's Committee-of-the-Whole meeting Tuesday night.

The report states property crime is up 32 per cent over the same period last year, with 189 reports of property crime in the first half of the year as compared to 143 last year.

Property crime includes offenses like commercial, residential and other break & enter, possession of stolen property, mischief, theft of vehicle, theft from vehicle, theft, arson and fraud.

Police also say there was a 22 per cent increase in impaired driving offences, but a 49% decrease in motor vehicle collisions overall.

"Our overall calls for service increased twelve percent in the town of Sidney and that is attributed, we believe, to the spike we had in the Spring with theft from vehicles," said Cst. Meighan de Pass, Sidney/North Saanich RCMP.  

"We did identify two prolific offenders from outside our community that we believe were responsible for the majority of those offences," de Pass added.

"They have now been charged and shortly after that, we noticed a dramatic drop in our theft from vehicles".

The report comes comes on the same day that Oak Bay police released an advisory that break-and-enters in the municipality were on the rise, with more occuring over this summer than in the entirety of 2018.

There was a silver lining in Sidney RCMP's report, however. Crime against other people was down 32 per cent for the first half of 2019 compared the same time in 2018 and violent crime is well below the five year average of 60 offences.

In the meantime, police are encouraging residents to be diligent and recommend locking cars, storage sheds and homes at all times. 

Anyone who spots suspicious activity in their neighbourhood is asked to contact RCMP immediately.

The full report presented to council see Town of Sidney, Committee of the Whole Meeting can be found here.