Violent Crime Down, Total Crime Up In City

Monday, January 02, 2012
Steve Fermier

It’s not just the homicide rate that took a tumble in the past year.

That fell by 12 percent in 2011, according to figures released by city officials.

And today, from the Mayor’s office, is an overview of other crime figures for the city in the year just ended.

Besides murders, other serious crimes also took a tumble as well.

The overall number for violent crimes was down by 6 percent.

A 34 year low for homicides was reported. Also gun related crimes were down 13 percent…shootings down 9 percent…juvenile arrests down 25 percent since the previous year.

Not all crimes saw a drop.

Property crimes were up last year by 4 percent and overall, total crime registered a 1 percent increase in the city.

Here is a statement from Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake:

“I would like to personally thank Commissioner Bealefeld, the men and women of the Baltimore Police Department, and our federal and state partners for their strong and sustained efforts to reduce crime in Baltimore,” said Mayor Rawlings-Blake. “It is not a time to celebrate, but it is also not a time to be cynical. Baltimore is making real progress. We can be a safer City by acknowledging the progress, building on it, and by doing more.”

“These significant reductions in violence will help us achieve our goal of growing Baltimore by 10,000 families over the next ten years,” Mayor Rawlings-Blake continued. “Commissioner Bealefeld and I are committed to doing more to reduce crime and violence including; investing in crime camera technology, adding new foot patrols in targeted neighborhood commercial corridors, and by continuing the fight against violent repeat offenders and illegal guns.”

Commissioner Fred Bealefeld also thanked the Mayor for supporting the strategy aimed at crime reduction by the Police Department.

The following is the preliminary crime report from City Hall:

  • Overall Violent crime is down 6%.
  • Homicide is down 12%. There were 27 fewer homicides in 2011 than 2010. It is the lowest total since 1977—a 34-year low. It is also the second lowest level since the City began tracking the total in 1970. Homicides have declined 17% over the last two years and 30% since 2007.
  • Gun related homicide is down 13%. Last year, 171 homicides were committed with a gun. This year, there have been 150 homicides committed with a gun–a 13% decrease.
  • Shootings are down 9%. There have been 381 non-fatal shootings this year. It is the fewest number of shootings recorded since the City started tracking them in 2000—a 47% decrease since 2000.
  • Juvenile violence has significantly declined. There have been 14 juvenile homicides and 28 juvenile shootings this year. Juvenile homicides are down nearly 50% since 2007 and juvenile shootings are down 70% since 2007. Juvenile arrests are down 25% since last year and down 60% since 2006.
  • Total crime (Part I) is up 1%. This is a 41% decrease compared to 2000.
  • Property crime is up 4%. This is a 40% decrease compared to 2000. This year’s increase in property crimes is related to an increase in burglaries and larcenies from auto compared to last year.
  • Over 50% of homicide suspects have prior gun arrests. (90% of homicide suspects have criminal histories, 36% have domestic violence histories and 40% are on parole or probation.)
  • Gun arrests are level with last year. The BPD has made over 1200 gun arrests and recovered over 2000 guns.
  • There were 237 repeat violent offenders charged federally through EXILE – an 8% increases and more than any previous year.
  • Citywide arrests continue to decline and are down 6% from last year. Arrests are down 30% since 2007. BPD made 25,000 less arrests this year than in 2007. Releases without charges are down 70% compared to last year. Only 4% of suspects arrested this year were released without charges.

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