FCPD 2021 Crime Summary
Fairfax County Reports Drop in Total Crime for 2021
Overall crime in Fairfax County fell by 9.6 percent driven by reductions in burglaries, robberies, domestic assaults, auto theft and larcenies from automobiles
The Fairfax County Police Department (FCPD) saw reductions in most major crime categories in 2021, fueled by a focus on community partnership and data-driven policing. The reductions came in many categories to include robbery, burglary, auto theft and malicious wounding. Following the national trend, Homicide was a rare category that saw an increase in 2021. This numerical increase of 6 homicide victims is driven by an unusually high number of indoor domestic violence incidents involving adult children killing parents and other family members. FCPD recorded 21 murders in 2021, compared to 15 in 2020. The Major Crimes Bureau solved a total of 399 cases of violent crime, including 16 of the 21 murders. Our homicide detectives continue to pursue leads for the unsolved cases. Our clearance rate is 76.2 percent in 2021, which exceeds the national average rate of 61.4 percent of homicide closures.
“The national rise in violence touched every major urban center in 2021, including Fairfax County,” said Chief of Police Kevin Davis. “Despite this, we remain one of the safest jurisdictions of our size in the country because our patrol officers, detectives and professional staff work tirelessly for our victims and their families. As we look ahead, FCPD will continue to engage with our community on the important work of public safety.”
2021 CRIME HIGHLIGHTS
- Overall crime fell by 9.6 percent in 2021, compared to 2020
- The drop in crime resulted in 3,187 fewer victims, compared to 2020
- Robbery fell by 1 percent in 2021, compared to 2020.
- Domestic Assaults fell by 4 percent in 2021, compared to 2020.
- Burglary fell by 11 percent in 2021, compared to 2020.
- Auto theft fell by 8 percent in 2021, compared to 2020.
- Larcenies from automobiles fell by 17 percent in 2021, compared to 2020.
Newly Launched Community Initiative (iPAC) Shows Initial Progress
In the fall, FCPD started a community engagement program called iPAC (Integrating Police and Community) that requires patrol officers to spend a minimum of 30 minutes on foot patrol per shift. The goal of these foot patrols is to interact with residents and business owners in areas where dispatchers receive the highest call volume. The iPAC initiative is different, as officers are not responding to a call for service. Thus, the non-enforcement community engagement is meant to generate more natural conversations about public safety. Police officers know these interactions build greater police legitimacy and strengthen trust. In addition to iPAC being a daily responsibility for patrol officers, FCPD commanders are also required to perform 30 minutes of weekly iPAC engagement. Since the launch, FCPD has recorded hundreds of community interactions.
The department also launched a community feedback measurement tool, which uses a survey linked to a QR code. Community members are asked for their input on the quality of service provided by the department and the professionalism of our police officers during an interaction.
Modernizing Policies and Procedures that Focus on 21st Century Policing
FCPD updated several pertinent policies in 2021 to further align the department with national best practices; improve officer and community safety and ensure our commitment to transparency. The most significant revision included a modification to the traffic pursuit policy, which now focuses on apprehending offenders who pose the greatest risk to our community and doing so with an eye on safety.
We are also in the process of updating our public information policy for the release of digital evidence from critical incidents. This includes a maximum 30-day release policy for body camera and in-vehicle camera footage following critical incidents involving police. Although still moving through the final approval process, Chief Davis has already begun to implement the expectation of a 30-day release for body camera footage for these critical incidents. The hiring of Dr. Noah Fritz as Director of our newly created Office of Data Analytics and Strategic Initiatives postures the FCPD to make stronger evidence-based decisions consistent with industry and community expectations.
As we enter year two of implicit bias and procedural justice training for our entire sworn and professional staff, our commitment to equity and inclusion continues under our Equity Officer, Lieutenant Fred Chambers. We are adding our profession’s gold standard use of force training, ICAT (Integrating Communications, Assessment and Tactics) and peer intervention training, ABLE (Active Bystandership for Law Enforcement) in 2022 as well. Our police officers and community benefit exponentially when training remains a constant focus.
Recruiting the Next Generation of Fairfax County Police Officers
In response to staffing shortages fueled by rising attrition and a national decline in police applicants, the FCPD recruitment team has bolstered efforts to attract the next generation of officers to Fairfax County. Hiring initiatives include enhanced social media advertising, more in-person recruiting events, a Communities of Trust partnership and a dedicated and revamped website JoinFCPD.org. FCPD also signed the 30×30 Pledge, which sets a goal of increasing female recruits to 30 percent by the year 2030. Roughly 16.5 percent of FCPD’s current police officers are female. This exceeds the national average of 12 percent. The Department is committed to improving all aspects of diversity.