Violent Crime Rose Slightly in 2012, Says FBI


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As Americans sort through the emotional wreckage of the recent Navy Yard shooting, the FBI quietly this week released crime statistics for 2012. While property crimes saw a decrease for the 10th year in a row, violent crime unfortunately saw a small uptick.

The FBI released the statistics in its yearly Crime in the United States report, compiled from data provided by law enforcement agencies through the FBI's Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) system. The bureau estimates that overall violent crime rose 0.7% over 2011 throughout the U.S., or around 386.9 crimes per 100,000 Americans (1,214,462 total). Property crime, which is more prevalent, fell to only 2,859.2 crimes per 100,000 Americans, a 0.9% drop from 2011 (8,975,438 total).

Though violent crime didn't rise significantly as a whole, the extremely violent crimes of murder and aggravated assault each increased 1.1% over their 2011 numbers. The arrest rate for murder in 2012 was 3.5 per 100,000 Americans, while the arrest rate for robbery that same year was 33.1 per 100,000 Americans. Splitting the U.S. into four general territories (West, Midwest, South, and Northeast), the southern U.S. states accounted for over 40% of all violent crimes in the U.S.

For property crimes, burglaries in particular were down 3.7% from 2011, while car theft rose a slight 0.6%. Arrest rates for burglary sat at 90.7 per 100,000 Americans during 2012, while the arrest rate for vehicle theft was 21.9 per 100,000 Americans. The overall arrest rate for property crime was 123.9 per 100,000 Americans in 2012. The FBI estimates that property crime in 2012 took a collective $15.5 billion from its victims.