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1896::Chief of Police Crime Report for Victoria, British Columbia

Updated: May 7

A year-end summary of the capital city's offences.

1895::Chief of Police Charles Bloomfield (centre) and His Men

"1895::Chief of Police Charles Bloomfield (seated centre) and His Men"

Photo: City of Victoria Archives (PR-0252-M06574)

As part of his annual duty, Victoria's Chief of Police Charles P. Bloomfield summarized the year's offences in a report to the city's mayor.

1897::Recapitulation of Crime for 1896

"1897::Recapitulation of Crime for 1896 in Victoria, British Columbia"

Clip: Chief of Police Report (1897)

The Chief stated that while Victoria's white and indigenous populations had decreased in the capital city, the Chinese population had increased. For curiosity's sake, he divided the year's charges into three lists, IndiansChinese, and Whites, and was surprised with the results. Larceny, public drunkenness, vagrancy and bylaw violations were at the top of both the Indians and Chinese lists, whose total charges equalled less than half of all charges on the Whites list.

1897::Chief of Police 'Whites & Others' List for Victoria, British Columbia

"1897::Chief of Police Whites List for 1896 in Victoria, British Columbia"

Clip: Chief of Police Report (1897)

Comparing 1896 to the previous year, the Chief noted a significant decrease in crime and that the crimes committed were not serious. The list presented good news for Victoria's law-abiding citizens; however, the Chief also believed that although his men had detected and prevented a great deal of crime within the city's limits, a significant portion of the outer communities were left unprotected at night, owing to the large area and his comparatively small force.

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