New Orleans saw a more than 19% drop in murders last year compared to 2012. It was the lowest number the city has experienced in nearly 30 years. New Orleans also saw a decline in the number of assaults, burglaries and auto thefts in 2013, according to the annual Uniform Crime Report (UCR).
Crimes that were on the rise included simple robberies, thefts and armed robberies. There was also an increase in the number of rape cases reported to police in 2013. Last year, 176 sexual assaults were reported, compared to 136 cases in 2012. That’s an increase of 29%.
“Police departments always encourage sexual assault victims to report an attack as soon as possible. Year after year, rape is the most underreported violent crime in the United States. Sadly, this means many offenders often go free and have the opportunity to victimize others”, said Superintendent Ronal Serpas. “The fact that our detectives were approached by 40 more victims last year compared to the year before is a sign that people believe our department can and will get these offenders off the streets.”
Serpas added, “So far this year, it’s encouraging that the number of murders is down some 38% compared to this time last year. It’s also reassuring that our investigators were able to arrest five suspected armed robbers this morning, as well as four other suspects over the weekend who were all in part responsible for the recent spike in armed robberies. Many officers worked long hours to identify and haul in these alleged violent offenders.”
“Regarding the 6% uptick in property crimes last year, I’m certain that visibility and officer presence are the solution- and we are working tirelessly to get there. The Landrieu Administration lifted the city out of millions of dollars in debt, and as a result, this department was able to launch an aggressive hiring campaign last July. Before then, recruiting efforts had been dormant for two-and-a-half years”, Serpas said.
“The recruitment campaign is solid and strong, as more than 25,000 people have visited our website (JoinNOPD.org), nearly 1,000 completed applications are currently being reviewed and Civil Service had to triple the number of test dates for applicants both last month and this month to accommodate those interested in becoming NOPD officers.”
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Contact: Remi Braden