VOL. 131 | NO. 147 | Monday, July 25, 2016
Violent Crime Still Up, But Rate of Increase Slows
By Bill Dries
Major violent crime in Memphis jumped 3 percent and 4.7 percent countywide in June from the same period last year, according to the latest Memphis crime statistics from the Memphis-Shelby Crime Commission.
A rate of 13 murders per 100,000 people in Memphis was responsible for most of the increase. Murders by themselves were up 66.7 percent from the same period in 2015.
That was a 68.6 percent increase countywide at 9.2 murders per 100,000 population. The countywide numbers reflect a spike in murders outside Memphis.
Incoming Crime Commission president Bill Gibbons noted that major violent crimes for the city and countywide were down in June from May and from June a year ago, but he declined to say it is a trend.
“It is too early to determine if we have turned a corner on the recent increases in violent crime in our community,” Gibbons said. “We will continue to monitor the data closely and search for innovative ways to help bring these numbers down.”
The statistics are kept by the Crime Commission for Operation: Safe Community, the 10-year old coalition of law enforcement and criminal justice system leaders who use the numbers to monitor the effectiveness of their overall anti-crime strategy.
The major property crime figures show a 4.7 percent drop in the city and a 6.3 percent drop countywide for the first six months of 2016 compared to the same period in 2015.
Of the three specific categories that make up major property crimes – burglary, theft and motor vehicle theft – motor vehicle theft was the only one to show an increase.
Motor vehicle thefts in the city were up 10.9 percent citywide from a year ago and up 6.8 percent countywide.
From January to June, there were 204.8 car thefts per 100,000 population in the city of Memphis.