- Associated Press - Wednesday, April 3, 2019

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Officials say crime rates have been significantly reduced at a shopping center in downtown Salt Lake City.

Arizona-based Vestar announced Tuesday the results of an effort to slash crime at The Gateway shopping area - an effort that was initiated after the company purchased the property in 2016.

The company hired Trident Security to compile a report that indicates serious felonies around the center have dropped from 26 in 2015 to three last year.

The report shows drug-related offenses, property crimes and other reports of bad behavior have all been reduced since 2015.

The company says it has spent nearly $1.5 million each year on private security as part of a $100 million overhaul.

Crime statistics from Salt Lake City police also show crime declining from 2015 to 2016.

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