Overall crime in Hermiston continued its 10-year downward slide in 2016 despite continued growth in population. There were 513 total crimes reported in 2016, which was a 2% decline compared to 2015, but was 32% below the previous 10-year average of 759. The continued drop in crime occurred while Hermiston’s total population hit a new high of 17,730, roughly 2,300 more than lived in the city 10 years ago.
“People often want to look at specific peaks and valleys in any specific crime area year-over-year, and draw conclusions,” said Jason Edmiston, Chief of Police. “The fact remains that when you look long-range, the greater Hermiston area continues to add more people, and those people are committing fewer crimes.”
Hermiston is continuing in its role as the center of growing commercial activity in Western Umatilla County; a role that can attract many visitors to the city, including those looking to commit crimes. The populations within the Urban Growth Boundaries of Hermiston, Umatilla, Stanfield, and Echo grew by a combined 27% between 2000 and 2016. Meanwhile total Property Crimes in Hermiston hit a new 10-year low in 2016, and total Violent Crimes are 12% below their 10-year average.
“Just like residents don’t think much about city borders when they go grocery shopping, criminals don’t just commit crimes where they live,” Edmiston said. “So it’s great to see that while the Hermiston area is continuing to grow as the commercial and services hub of Umatilla County, the criminal element isn’t following suit.”
View the 2016 Hermiston Police Department Report (PDF).