Monday, 29 October 2012 11:56
by Pete Yost, Associated Press
FBI: Crime reported to police fell last year
WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of violent crimes reported to police decreased 3.8 percent last year to 1.2 million, the fifth straight year of declines, the FBI announced Monday.
Meanwhile, the total number of property crime reported to law enforcement agencies went down by 0.5 percent to 9 million, the ninth consecutive year that figure has fallen. Property crimes resulted in estimated losses of $156.6 billion.
The South accounted for 41.3 percent of violent crime, while the West had 22.9 percent of it. The Midwest claimed 19.5 percent of the cases and the Northeast, 16.2 percent.
In 2011, authorities solved nearly 64 percent of murders, over 40 percent of forcible rapes, nearly 29 percent of robberies and nearly 57 percent of aggravated assaults.
The FBI said firearms were used in two-thirds of the nation’s murders last year, and in two out of every five robberies and in one out of five aggravated assaults.
The FBI’s crime reporting program is one of two statistical measures of crime levels issued by the Justice Department. The FBI program captures crimes that are reported to police. Historically, less than half of all crimes, including violent crimes, are reported to police. The other measure, the national crime victimization survey, is designed to capture crime data whether it is reported to police or not. That survey is based on interviews of crime victims.
Two weeks ago, the victimization survey reported that violent crimes jumped 18 percent last year, the first rise in nearly 20 years, while property crimes rose for the first time in a decade. Academic experts say the new government data fall short of signaling a reversal of the longterm decline in crime.
The survey found that the increase in the number of violent crimes was the result of an upward swing in simple assaults, which rose 22 percent, from 4 million in 2010 to 5 million last year. The incidence of rape, sexual assault and robbery remained largely unchanged, as did serious violent crime involving weapons or injury.
The experts said the percentage increases last year were so large primarily because the 2011 crime totals were compared to historically low levels of crime in 2010. Violent crime has fallen by 65 percent since 1993, according to the victimization survey.
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DEC 8 - Maybe that wasn't such a good idea, after all. This post on the Louisiana Oil & Gas Association's site says we're looking at oil prices that are tanking because there's so much oil coming out of the Gulf. Some are even predicting a glut. What's likely to be the result? Lower gas prices, higher refinery profits, and more pressure on the feds to loosen export restrictions.
DEC 8 Here's the latest from blogger Robert Mann, and it's on one of his favorite topics: Bobby Jindal. He's taking a look at Jindal's record and his current maneuvering, which of course is a ploy to position him for a run for the White House. "America Next," Jindal's current big idea, is just as vague about what it is proposing as Jindal usually is, Mann says. And it won't protect him from his "unimaginative record," as Mann describes it.
DEC 8 - Don't know what that is? Then run on over to LaPolitics and read this post by Jeremy Alford, which serves as a history lesson about the famed tonic and it's purveyor, Dudley LeBlanc. It's really a fascinating story and Alford's description of Dudley as an "icon of Louisiana politics and culture" is not an exaggeration.
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