Oakland's crime rate has been climbing over the years as the city struggles with budget cuts and a shrinking police force.
At current levels, Oakland's force is less than one-third the size of the average California's city -- even though it's the most crime ridden in the state.
The department is trying to turn things around, with a renewed emphasis on the CompStat system, according to interim police chief Sean Whent. Focusing on areas that are most prone to crime seems to be helping. The murder tally plunged nearly 30% last year to a level not seen since 2004. Assaults and rapes also fell, according to department stats.
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