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FDLE says no investigation into Fort Pierce crime stats

Posted at 5:46 PM, Jun 06, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-06 18:56:33-04

Just before the close of business Monday, former Fort Pierce police officer Keith Holmes filed a complaint with the city.  He then addressed commissioners, alleging wrongdoing over crime stats.

“Have been changing UCR codes which are city’s way of tracking crime to reflect a major drop in crime," Holmes said.

Holmes, who was fired for his actions over the Demarcus Semer shooting, gave one example. “A gunshot victim changed to an information report.”

No one from the police department would go on camera with NewsChannel 5 Tuesday citing pending civil litigation.

We asked the department for its latest crime statistics.  While we are still waiting for the numbers, the chief said recently, there’s been improvement.

“In our Lincoln Park Area where we have our most violent crime, we have reduced that by 26%," said Police Chief Diane Hobley-Burney last month at a town hall meeting.

“We changed the dynamics of our crime fighting," the chief added then.

A spokeswoman with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement said Tuesday that the FDLE had not conducted an investigation in the past, nor is there an active investigation into the Fort Pierce police department when it comes to the UCR, or Uniform Crime Report codes.

Altering crime stats in South Florida is not unheard of.

In 1998, then Boca Raton police chief Peter Petracco resigned after a captain had altered crime statistics, reducing the city’s felony rate by 11% the year before.