DETROIT (FOX 2) - Detroit Police Chief James Craig stood before city council members Tuesday to update them on the uptick of violence in Detroit in the last 28 days.
"This is probably the first time as we are in our second quarter where we've seen an uptick in our non-fatal shootings," he said.
Craig says non-deadly shootings are up 1 percent, aggravated assaults are down 4 percent, robberies are down 11 percent, and carjackings are down 39 percent. Craig attributes the rise in crime to warmer weather.
"The issue for us is the spontaneous arguments that erupt and end up in violence," he said.
Craig also telling council members that although the the city has seen 10 fewer homicides, a 9 percent reduction compared to this time last year, the number of sexual assaults has gone up.
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"We're up 9 percent, 35 more than this time last year," he said.
That's on top of an increase from the year before. Just this week, 34-year-old accused serial murderer and rapist Deangelo Martin was for stabbing and sexually assaulting a 26-year-old woman. Police believe he's responsible for the rapes and murders of at least three other women on the city's east side.
"The key is making sure that community knows that we care and that they have a comfort level in discussing it," Craig said.
Detroit police, working with the city, have begun an aggressive campaign to board up vacant homes, hitting the east, then the west side, over the next few months. Craig visited Linnhurst street over the weekend where the body of 53-year-old Travesene Ellis was found.
"Just appalled. When we look at these abandoned homes that are not secure, they're havens for criminal activity," he said.
All agree that increasing patrols in high-crime areas and timely communication are key, but council members are also asking for a minimum of two social workers to be assigned to each precinct and much more community involvement is needed.
"We have to do a better job as a community in ensuring our role, finding our voice in solving crime in the city of Detroit," said Detroit City Council member Mary Sheffield.