Barrie Police Service annual report shows consistency in crime despite pandemic

Fewer calls for city's tactical or K9 unit in 2020 compared to the year before

Despite a global pandemic, the Barrie Police Service didn’t see a whole lot of fluctuation in crime over the last year.

The local law enforcement service released its annual report on Friday, highlighting many of the calls for service it received in 2020. Over the year, police received 66,280 calls for service, down nearly 8,000 from the year before, but not far off 2018’s figures. The Service points out in its report calls for service decreased in 2020 due to COVID-19 pandemic restrictions.

There were nearly 32,000 calls to 911 over the year, about the same as years previous, but about half were misdials. The Service points out, for the second year in a row, July was their busiest month, while Fridays are consistently the busiest day of the week for police.

The Barrie Police Service Tactical Support Unit, the city’s SWAT team, was called to one bomb threat in 2020, oversaw two break and enter investigations, 9 robberies, and 20 weapons calls. All were down slightly from the year previous; overall, the unit responded to 42 calls in 2020, compared to 78 in 2019. There was also a decline in the number of calls for the city’s K9 unit, at 152 last year compared to 191 the year before.

The annual report comes as the service conducts a review of its practices. The review is a result of community outcry following an increase in Black Lives Matter support last year. A final report on the review is expected in July.

Below is a summary of the various calls the Barrie Police Service responded to over the course of the year, compared to the two years previous: