APPLETON, Wis. (WFRV) – Appleton Police Chief Todd Thomas joined Local 5 and talked about the first-quarter crime statistics in the latest Community Update.

Thomas says that Appleton’s new Traffic Safety Unit is the next step in addressing safety concerns. Since officers are busy, Thomas says they don’t have a lot of time to focus on traffic safety. The Traffic Safety Officer will work on this specific issue.

The first-quarter crime statistics came out for Appleton, and Thomas says they are starting to a leveling-off following the uptick in 2020. Thomas also mentioned that the department sees an uptick in crime during an economic downturn/inflation.

Thomas discussed that weapon offenses aren’t coming down as quickly, but there isn’t a high number of weapon offenses. Drug activity has gone up since the pandemic, and Thomas tells Local 5 that a lot of resources are working on the issue.