Columbus reports lowest crime rates in more than a decade


COLUMBUS, Ga — The Columbus Consolidated Government reports the 2016 crime rates dropped to their lowest in more than ten years.

A government press release says the overall number of criminal offenses that fall in the eight Part-One categories – murder and non-negligent homicide, rape [legacy & revised], robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, motor vehicle theft, larceny-theft, and arson – fell 15 percent in comparison to 2015.

These eight types of crime are classified as “Part-One offenses” based on their serious nature and likelihood of being reported to police. The highest Part-One crime rate was in 2009 with more than 15,600 reported offenses.

The 2016 crime statistics show a 33 percent drop since that last high. There were about 10,500 reported incidents this past year – the lowest number in the last ten years.

“A reduction in crime rate does not mean there is no crime in Columbus, or that there is not serious crime in Columbus,” Mayor Theresa Tomlinson says. “What it does mean is that we are making significant strides to reduce crime overall and that those reductions are being sustained long-term.”

The release says although there was an increase in murders – 23 opposed to only 17 in 2015 – the overall violent crime rate fell eight percent. The statistic includes the number of rapes, robberies, and aggravated assaults.

The city government says rapes are down 22 percent, robberies are up one percent, but aggravated assaults are down 17 percent.

Columbus also saw a decrease in property crimes, with an overall drop 15 percent – 12 percent fewer burglaries, 16 percent less thefts (larceny), and 16 percent less motor vehicle theft.

Columbus Police Chief Ricky Boren says the battle for a safer Columbus is one investigators and officers on the street continue to fight daily, with encouraging regular decreases over time.

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