SAN DIEGO — A new study from the San Diego Association of Governments found overall arrest rates in San Diego County reached a seven-year low in 2021.

However, in some crime categories, the study found arrests increased. The study examined adults and juvenile arrests in a variety of categories.

“It’s a good measure to see trends and how things change over the years,” said Octavio Rodriguez, the principle criminal justice researcher at SANDAG.

The study also found fewer adults and youth arrested per day. But for both age groups, rates for felonies and for violent and weapon offenses increased.

Rodriguez said the pandemic, but also policy changes that made certain offenses nonarrestable, played a factor.

“We are still adjusting after the COVID-19 pandemic and we are still trying to figure out how these trends are going to look like in the following years,” Rodriguez said.

“I can point fingers at all kinds of things but the solution is supporting the resources in these communities that are doing the work that needs to be done,” said Terence Shigg, the executive director at ABC Youth Foundation.

The foundation works to change the statistics with prevention.

“Kids have it, the need, the desire, the discipline within them,” Shigg said. “They just need somebody to believe in them more than they believe in themselves.”

Through several of their programs, tutoring, boxing classes and more, they have reached hundreds of lives. The foundation said it has seen a steady increase in enrollment for decades.

“We teach our kids how to step off in life with their best foot forward, without cowardness but with courage and dignity,” Moore said.

“It’s self-confidence, it’s discipline, it’s self-control,” Shigg said. “All those things are encompassed in the concept that we teach everyday from the minute they walk through the door. Somebody is going to give them an example of what all these things look like.”

Witnessing the success is what keeps the doors at ABC Youth Foundation open.

“I do it to help save lives,” Moore said. “A lot of the powers at be can see that there is something that can be done if we put our best foot forward.”

The SANDAG study also found declines for all racial and ethnic groups, though small for Black people. The study found that Black and Hispanic people also continue to be found overrepresented for their population in all arrests, also similar for Hispanic individuals.

The study found that white individuals and other ethnic groups to be underrepresented.