Businesses pressure the city to do more to curb property crime

Business wants crime action

Cindy White

Even more businesses are speaking out about the impact of repeated property crime.

The latest is the owner of OK Tire on Dilworth Road.

Kelly Mouillierat says windows have been smashed and several vehicles were broken into recently.

He blames what he calls the "homeless superhighway" along Mill Creek and points to a government office across the street where people go to collect assistance cheques.

He has sent a letter to the mayor and city council saying the issue has also gotten worse at the OK Tire on Springfield Road since supportive housing was built nearby.

Castanet recently spoke to the owner of Skogies Car Wash and several other business operators in the area. They say the rampant break-ins, thefts and smash-and-grabs are costing them thousands of dollars in repairs.

So what is the city doing?

“We continue to work very closely with a range of partners, including Interior Health and BC Housing to address some of the underlying root causes or associated causes to our property crime challenges in Kelowna,” said Darren Caul, community safety director with the City of Kelowna.

“We’re also nearing the tail end of developing a community safety plan. And the community safety plan will be a five-year action plan comprised of tangible things that the city and governmental partners and non-governmental partners can do to reduce the criminality and the victimization that’s occurring in our city.”

Caul also urges businesses to continue to report these crimes. "The RCMP take an intelligence-led approach and they deploy their resources based on where the crimes are occurring and when they’re occurring, but if they don’t know, they can’t go.”

Castanet has reached out to RCMP for comment but has not had a response.

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