AIKEN, S.C. (WJBF) — NewsChannel 6 looked at the top 15 crime-ridden streets. According to new data, most incidents take place in the business district and on the north side.
“Some hotspots pop up around downtown around the Whiskey/Pine Log corridor, the Lowe’s Home Depot/Target area, and then Richland Avenue corridor,” Lt. Jennifer Hayes told NewsChannel 6’s Aiken Bureau Chief Shawn Cabbagestalk. “Some on the north side here around Hampton Avenue and in Crossland Park, as well,” she added.
Burglaries, vandalism, and break-ins continue to be top issues. The city saw its first homicide in February 2023. There were nearly ten in 2022.
“A lot of the crimes do involve validated gang members, but they’re not necessarily gang related. It’s not like a beef between one gang and another gang. They just happen to be gang members and they’re having other disputes that devolve into shootings,” she added.
Cameras were put in Crosland Park last year for security.
“They’re another resource that we can rely on to look at images and things later. Cars entering and leaving the area, stuff like that. For investigations it’s been very helpful as well for helping solve some of those crimes,” she shared.
Neighbors blame teenagers for many of the crimes committed there.
“They’ve tried to break windows in my house,” a concerned resident shared. “I have cameras all the way around my house. They will steal things out of the yard that don’t make no sense. They just don’t care. They have nothing better to do,” she added.
Community-building events, like sports, are in the works.
“A lot of kids, they don’t think about it, but trauma. You’re living in a situation or you happen to see, you know, traumatic situations, friends are getting killed, you know, when these violent, are assaulted in these violent crimes. So we’re trying to dig in a little bit more to how we can help them overcome some of the trauma they’re experiencing because of these events,” Lt. Jennifer Hayes said.