IRVING (CBS 11 NEWS) – The city of Irving may be the safest it’s ever been.  The crime rate hit an historic low in 2012, which was also the 8th straight year Irving’s total crimes have gone down.

Irving recorded three homicides last year and 28 sexual assaults.  Most crimes were non-violent property crimes.

Altogether, 6815 crimes were reported, down nearly 500 from 2011.

“The biggest reductions were burglaries and the theft categories which include car burglaries as well,” according to Irving Police Chief Larry Boyd.

Chief Boyd says his commanders meet every other week to spot  trends and redeploy to hot spots.  They recently broke up a residential burglary ring from Houston.

Though car burglaries are down they’re still among the most prolific crimes. Chief Boyd says the areas most likely to generate crimes are where people and vehicles meet, like shopping centers and apartments.

According to reports, 60% of Irving residents live in apartments.

Police work with owners to try to head off problem areas.

One bright spot is the Britain Way Apartments, a ’60s-era complex recently renovated but taking many cues from police.  “We’ve taken different measures in terms of landscaping,” says owner Deepak Sulakhe adding, “in terms of lighting and highlighted those areas so we don’t have any criminal activities going on.”

The complex also 34 HD cameras that can be accessed by police if a crime unfolds.

Chief Boyd says community cooperation like this is paramount.  “We always want to make sure we work together as a team, as a partner, for people who care about the community.”

It seems to be paying off, if some apartment residents CBS 11 News spoke with represent most citizens of Irving.

“I always thought it was a safe city to live in,” Montrell Harper told us; he has lived in Irving all his life and says crime was never an issue for him “I never thought about Irving being bad at all, so I don’t see a big difference.”

Gabriel Flores added his kudos. “Been working down the street all my life, come in late, in and out, never seen any problems really.”

Police in Irving want to keep it that way.

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