Shots fired and robbery reports down significantly over last year, Madison police say

Reports for both in third quarter of 2022 down more than 40% compared to same time last year

MADISON, Wis. — The Madison Police Department’s report for the 3rd quarter of 2022 finds three of the city’s biggest crime concerns — gunshots fired, robberies, and stolen cars — are all down compared to the same period last year.

The report, which was submitted this week, includes preliminary data from July 1 through September 30. In that timeframe, MPD says it responded to 38 shots fired reports, 35 robbery reports, and 201 stolen auto reports.

According to the department’s data, compared to the same time period last year, those numbers represent a 43% drop in shots fired calls (67), a 30% drop in robberies (50), and a 5% drop in stolen cars (212).

The report indicates the city is also seeing a significant drop in shots fired and robbery calls compared to other recent years. The three-year average for shots fired calls between July and September is 71, while the three-year average for robberies between July and September is 61 — meaning this year’s third quarter totals for shots fired calls are down 47% compared to the three-year average and robberies are down 43% from their three-year average.

While stolen car reports are down slightly in the city compared to last year, they are still about 14% higher than the three-year average for stolen car reports between July and September.

Other Trends

Like many communities, Madison is seeing an increase in overdose deaths. MPD data found that officers responded to 14 overdose deaths between July and September of this year, up 75% from the same timeframe last year, when they responded to eight, and 81% higher than the three-year average for overdose deaths. However, MPD notes, those statistics only involve “clear” overdose deaths that involved a police response — meaning it is possible that the true number of overdose deaths in the city may be higher.

Similar to robbery reports in the city, burglary reports were also down between July 1 and September 30 this year (244) compared to the same time last year (340) and the three-year average (316).

Thefts from vehicles between July 1 and September 30 this year (310) were also down compared to the third quarter of last year (383) and the three-year average for that timeframe (434).

Police say they continue to focus on reckless and hazardous driving. The department received 255 traffic complaints between July 1 and September 30, which is roughly in line with what they usually see during those months, although 2022’s rate is about 1% higher than the three-year average.

Total Arrests

Madison Police reported making a total of 2,261 arrests between July 1 and September 30 of this year, up from 1,772 arrests made during the same time period last year.

Of those arrested between July and September this year, 1,641 were male, 619 were female, and one was recorded as gender unknown. A total of 1,109 of the people arrested were classified as Caucasian, 1,046 were classified as Black, 43 were classified as Asian, 13 were classified as Native American, and 50 were classified as “Other” in the race section of MPD’s arrest reports.

Use of Force

Madison police reported 112 instances of use of force between July 1 and September 30 of this year. Of those, 51 were categorized as takedowns and 21 were categorized as “active counter measures.” Police also reported 17 uses of pepper spray, 11 uses of hobble restraints, seven uses of Tasers, four uses of “impact munitions,” and one K9 bite. Police did not report any gun shots toward suspects in the third quarter of this year, and have not reported any since the first three months of 2022.

You can read the full report here and find it embedded below.