Looking at the numbers, violent crime and property crime have increased slightly in Lafayette (from 1,142 to 1,293 and from 6,393 to 7,118 respectively) from 2006 to 2007. Violent crime includes murder, forcible rape, robbery and aggravated assault. Property crime includes burglary, larceny/theft and motor vehicle theft. In Baton Rouge and Shreveport, crime rates as a whole in both areas were declining. But in Baton Rouge - a city listed as twice the size of Lafayette - murders rose from 57 to 71. In Lafayette, they rose from 10 to 15. (Murders rose in all four Louisiana cities cited.) Across the board, crime numbers for New Orleans were on the rise. For Lafayette, only forcible rape decreased, from 73 to 68.
Nationally, the FBI reports a 1.4 percent decrease in violent crimes in 2007 when compared to 2006, and a 7 percent decrease in property crimes. The FBI cautions against using data from Crime in the United States for making direct comparisons between cities.
... Comparisons lead to simplistic and/or incomplete analyses that often create misleading perceptions adversely affecting communities and their residents. Valid assessments are possible only with careful study and analysis of the range of unique conditions affecting each local law enforcement jurisdiction. It is important to remember that crime is a social problem and, therefore, a concern of the entire community. ...
David Calhoun and Elizabeth “EB” Brooks are the first two employees of Lafayette Central Park Inc., the nonprofit charged with turning Lafayette Consolidated Government’s 100-acre Johnston Street Horse Farm property into a passive public park. Calhoun was named executive director, and Brooks is director of planning and design.
Is it a crime for citizens to photograph, video, or take notes of a police officer in the line of duty, or a right protected by the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution? Locally, such activity, as witnessed recently, will at the very least result in a night spent behind bars.
There will soon be a whole lot of shakin’ going on at Benny’s Sportshack Supplement Depot, a new concept by Opelousas native Benny Nele. Located at 2002 Johnston St., the supplement shop, smoothie bar and café, featuring hot off the press paninis and wraps, plans to open in late May.