Violent-crime rates down
Public safety data and goals for crime reduction are presented in the 50-State Report, a web-based study produced by the Council of State Governments (CSG) Justice Center.
While the report did not make national headlines, Marshall Clement, Director of Justice Reinvestment at the GSC Justice Center, stated that the study showed crime at historic lows, prison populations decreased and recidivism rates lowered for the nation.
So, what does this report reveal about issues pertinent to Kentucky law enforcement? To begin with, violent crime in Kentucky is down 23 percent from 2007 to 2017.
However, the state had 10,056 violent-crime incidents and 3,398 violent-crime arrests, meaning Kentucky’s violent crime incident rate was 2.9 times higher than the state’s violent crime arrest rate.
Since 2013, violent crimes such as homicide, robbery, rape and aggravated assault have increased 8 percent. Kentucky has also jumped from having the 24th highest homicide rate in 2007 to the 17th in 2017. Kentucky’s homicide rate increased 23 percent during this period.
The report also shows several positive statistics. Kentucky had the third-lowest aggravated-assault rate and the 16th-lowest rate of rape in the nation in 2017. Furthermore, the commonwealth had a 31 percent decline in robbery during the decade.
Strategies offered by this report for crime reduction and the strengthening of communities include examining crime, arrest and victimization data to understand crime trends in local areas. Additional suggestions are improved responses to those with behavioral health needs, evidence-based policing and making sure officers are equipped and trained to reduce crime, deescalate situations and respond to overdose victims.
The data is available for all to view and it shows that overall, law enforcement has been doing a good job. Keep up the excellent work.