HEMPSTEAD - Hempstead police have reported a 22-percent drop in crime in the first part of this year compared to the same time last year, but some residents say the stats are misleading.

Hempstead Police Chief Joseph Wing says he's hired 25 new officers to help keep the peace in the village. He says from January to March of 2010, there were 53 robberies. The same time this year, there were only 30, which translates into a 30-percent decrease.

Last year, there were 28 assaults, compared to 24 this year. Also, burglaries went from 66 in 2010 to 53 this year, which represents a 20-percent drop.

"We believe sometimes when you attack the smaller issues, some of the bigger ones go away," Wing says.

Some Hempstead residents say they do not feel safer, claiming that they rarely see police officers get out of their cruisers, while others say they are grateful for the extra police presence.