Winston-Salem, North Carolina

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Site LE Agency
Winston-Salem Police Department

Site Researcher
University of North Carolina at Greensboro’s North Carolina Network for Safe Communities (NCNSC)

Site Focus
Violent crime, gun crime

SPI Strategy
Creation of a real-time crime center, technology integration

Site Cohort

Site Profile
Mid-sized urban area of 133.82 sq. miles with a population of 246,328

Project Overview

In response to rising violent crime, particularly gun crime, in Winston-Salem, NC, the Winston-Salem Police Department (WSPD) will implement an innovative, data-driven strategy including a real-time crime center, new technology, and a new practitioner-researcher partnership to evaluate these new approaches. WSPD will create a real-time crime center, which will have the ability to extract and streamline various camera feeds across the city and continuously update crime maps, bulletins, and case management, integrating with computer-aided dispatch (CAD). WSPD will use the real-time crime center to share information with officers in the field, with the goal of reducing gun crime and violent crime, and increase perceptions of community safety. Mitigation of the precipitous gun crime rates will be accomplished through intelligence-led policing, technological innovation, and community partnership.

Data Highlight

  • 39.6 percent increase in Part 1 Violent Crime, from 1,918 in 2015 to 2,678 in 2019.
  • 60.4 percent increase in aggravated assaults, from 1,358 in 2015 to 2,178 in 2019.
  • 116 percent increase in gun crime, from 895 in 2015 to 1,929 in 2019.
  • In 2019, there were 31 homicides, the most the city has experienced since 1994.  Of those 31 homicides, 21 were gun-related. 
  • Rapes have remained at an average of 45.19 per 100,000; larcenies, 3,653.75 per 100,000; and motor vehicle thefts over the past five years have averaged 446.6 per 100,000.
  • In 2019, the Department seized 900 firearms, an increase from just 685 seized in 2018.  The projections for 2020 are over 1,000 firearm seizures.