Trayvon Martin 2: Community Crime Information

The city of Sanford, Florida has a crime rate significantly above average for the U.S. and for Florida as shown in the image below. (source)
Here are more images from another source on Sanford robberies and burglaries compared to U.S. averages (click any image in this post for sharper version):
I was unable to find source data for crimes committed within The Retreat at Twin Lakes, which is comprised of about 260 townhouses.  This community was built in 2004 and current market value of the units is roughly half of initial sales price; many units are rented, including Brandy Green's and George Zimmerman's.  There is high turnover and vacancy rate.  Assuming 2.5 inhabitants per townhouse, that would be equivalent to a small town of about 650 people.  But some of the townhouses are not occupied, so if 40 are unoccupied as one news report states, that would bring the community population down to 550.

I went to the news reports to see what they reported for previous crimes in The Retreat.  I'm unsure how reporters get their "facts".  I presume they interview a random stranger walking the neighbourhood.  The interviewee at some point states, "Well, I don't know much about it, but my cousin's wife's hairdresser said . . ."  What is said next is what I assume is reported as fact.  Understandably, different hairdressers may operate from different knowledge bases, so this leads to different "facts" in news reports from different reporters. 

What did the reporters write?  This account appeared in the Daily Beast on March 28, and details various crimes residents had reported, including a morning burglary by two men while a woman with an infant hid in a bedroom awaiting police response.  Journalist Amy Green wrote: 
The burglary of Olivia Bertalan’s home was just one of at least eight reported over the previous 14 months—several of which, neighbors said, involved young black men. 
Eight burglaries in 260 residences in 14 months in a community of about 550 seems high to me.

On March 17, Frances Robles, writing for the normally factually challenged Miami Herald, stated:
The answer may lie in police records, which show that 50 suspicious-person reports were called in to police in the past year at Twin Lakes. There were eight burglaries, nine thefts and one other shooting in the year prior to Trayvon’s death.
In all, police had been called to the 260-unit complex 402 times from Jan. 1, 2011 to Feb. 26, 2012.
A third article, written by Lane DeGregory for the Tampa Bay Times on March 25 stated:
By the time Zimmerman shot Trayvon Martin, 40 properties inside the gate were empty and more than half of the residents were renters. 
                     .  .  .
For the first two months of this year, at the Retreat at Twin Lakes, the Sanford police logged 51 calls for service. Half were just people requesting information. The others included eight burglaries, two bike thefts and three simple assaults.
The last article has an excellent photo showing a woman standing at the north tee in the sidewalk that I reference in my time line analysis.  It appears in a later post on my timeline analysis, with other images of the shooting location.

The next post will be:  Trayvon Martin 3: Spin on Trayvon

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