Ojai Crime Drops 28 Percent

By Daryl Kelley  

Serious crime in Ojai fell last year to one of the lowest levels in two decades, as thefts from automobiles plummeted even as felony assaults ticked up from 2007, according to new crime reports. Overall, Ojai experienced 189 serious crimes in 2008, compared with 263 the previous year and 257 in 2006, reported the county Sheriff’s Department, which polices Ojai and the rest of the Ojai Valley. That’s a 28 percent overall drop in crime in Ojai last year compared with 2007. “Ojai continues to be a safe place to live and visit,” said Sheriff’s Capt. Chris Dunn, who functions as Ojai’s police chief.  Crime has been lower in Ojai in only one other year since 1990, with 177 offenses in 2001, data shows. And last year’s total of 189 offenses compares favorably with Ojai’s average of 222 crimes a year this decade and 251 crimes annually during the last two decades. That’s likely because of the “vigilance of our residents and business owners,” Dunn said. Meanwhile, crime in the Ojai

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