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Belleville Police Chief Says Crime Is Not Rising

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BELLEVILLE, IL (KMOX) - The Belleville Chief of Police says crime is not on the rise.

Chief William Clay met with concerned citizens Tuesday night after the recent armed robbery of a woman sitting in her car in downtown Belleville.

Clay told the crowd that incident is not indicative of a crime increase and the crime rate proves it. “[It is] very, very close to, even in 2010 and ’11, still very close to the same averages it always was back even in the last 10 years.”

Belleville resident Brandon Goff, 19, was charged with felony armed robbery Saturday. He is accused of approaching the woman in the downtown business district, pointing a handgun, and demanding her purse.

Police spokesman Don Sax says it is natural for some to overreact to such an incident.

“If an armed robbery occurs in a neighborhood, immediately the neighbors are going to think ‘oh yeah, crime is just getting out of control in our neighborhood.’ It may be an isolated incident,” he said.

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