7 years ago

FBI says murder and violent crimes increased nationwide last year

TomoNews US
TomoNews US
WASHINGTON — The number of murders, rapes, assaults and robberies throughout the United States ticked up in the early half of 2015, according to preliminary figures released by the FBI earlier this week.

Overall violent crime was up 1.7 percent nationwide in the first half of last year, compared with figures for the first six months of 2014, the FBI said in a press release on Tuesday.

Murder rates specifically were up 6.2 percent during the same period.

The number of rapes jumped a shocking 9.6 percent, although this increase is in light of changes in how the FBI defines rape. The newer definition includes more forms of sexual assault.

Most cities experienced an average increase in violent crime rates, but according to the data, violent crime rose most dramatically in cities with populations between 250,000 and half a million.

Meanwhile, property crimes including larceny, burglary and arson dropped 4.2 percent. Among property crimes, only car thefts increased between January and June 2015, recording a 1 percent climb, according to Reuters.

Although at one point crime rates were soaring across America, the figures have plummeted since two decades ago. Criminologists point to the improvement in crime rates from 20 years ago and caution against reading too much into last year's figures.

The newly released figures come from the FBI's Uniform Crime Reporting program, which relies on local law enforcement agencies to voluntarily submit their crime data.

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