With the retreat of the COVID-19 pandemic, police are observing more incidents in Galt, Chief of Police Brian Kalinowski has said during presentations of Galt Police Department’s 2022 annual report. However, support from the city is boosting the agency’s work.

The total number of incidents that officers responded to in 2022 is about 10% higher than in 2021 and 8% higher than in 2020. The number of traffic collisions in 2022 was 5% higher than in 2021 and 16% higher than in 2020.

“On the traffic side, again in 2020, you see how we built kind of back to the new normal,” Kalinowski said on March 21 at the Galt City Council meeting. The police chief also brought the report to the State of the City luncheon the following day, and the Public Safety Committee Meeting on March 27.

Among traffic collisions, those that resulted in injury or death rose the most proportionally, from 30 in 2021 to 55 in 2022, an 83% increase. There was one fatal collision last year, at the intersection of Twin Cities Road and Cherokee Lane, which killed one person and injured seven others.

Officers are also issuing more traffic citations, 983 in 2022 compared to 655 in 2021.

The most crash-prone locations were A Street between Lincoln Way and Highway 99 and the Twin Cities roundabout east of 99. The most injury collisions happened on A Street near 99 and at the Lincoln-Elm Avenue intersection.

Motor vehicle thefts rose in 2022, and assaults with firearms saw a slight increase. Kalinowski said the Sacramento County district attorney is working on 2022’s lone homicide case, the killing in September of Galt resident Jimmy Crisp; but the chief had no other information to share.

The department seized about 890 grams of illegal drugs last year, the largest portion being meth. The next most common drugs found were cocaine and fentanyl.

Kalinowski said Council decisions have allowed the agency to improve its equipment — which was why he felt comfortable putting a picture of a Galt police car on the front page of the report — as well as change its organizational structure. The addition of a captain position below the chief means the department can “better function, serve the community and provide a platform for succession planning internally,” he explained.

On the technology side, Kalinowski said, the department started a drone program, installed automatic license plate readers and expanded its social media presence. In staffing, it hired five new officers, two community service officers, a dispatcher and an executive assistant. Richard Small was promoted to captain, while two officers became lieutenants and three became sergeants.

Former Sgt. Craig Walton was honored on his retirement from the agency, and K-9 Copper, the personal dog of Sgt. Kyle Slater, went into retirement after his owner was promoted.

View the full report on the city of Galt website at bit.ly/3lNqmt0 (case senstitive).