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Submitted by WWAY on Wed, 02/20/2008 - 5:27pm.

WILMINGTON -- It's a fact of life, the more people in an area, the more crime. It's one unfortunate side of our region's growth. What kinds of crimes we can expect to see in the future? Ben David, the district attorney for New Hanover and Pender Counties has a pretty clear sense of what kind of crimes we're going to see. As we've reported in our ongoing 2020 series the increase in abuse of drugs, both prescribed and illegal are on the rise. David expects to see even more in the future. And more ominously, he says that, in turn, will produce more violent crimes. To combat these statistics, he's working with schools to educate people at a young age about the dangers of drugs. Some residents say they, too, fear a rise in violent crime, while other see a rise in white collar crime. Wilmington resident Shauna Cooper said, "Violent crimes, especially in the downtown area after dark, crimes against women." Wilmington resident Alassandra Gibbs said, "I really see more robberies. I've had a lot of people move into my neighborhood so I really see more robberies and break-ins." Wilmington resident Stephanie Bias said, "I think that health care fraud and identity theft within the realm of health care is really going to become an issue. It is already a growing issue and I am afraid it is going to become more widespread." David says new jails and expanded court houses may well be in our future.

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