Florida Crime at a 43-Year Low - WMBB News 13 - The Panhandle's News Leader

Florida Crime at a 43-Year Low

Posted: Updated:
Governor Rick Scott was joined by Florida Department of Law Enforcement Commissioner Gerald Bailey, Florida sheriffs and police chiefs to announce Florida’s crime rate dropped 4.7 percent compared to 2012, putting Florida at a 43-year crime low. The findings were based on the Uniform Crime Report.

Governor Scott said, “Today we have more good news for families. Even while Florida’s population grows, the total number of crimes continues to drop, which is a testament to our brave men and women who serve in our communities each and every day. Florida is now at a 43-year crime low. Our lower crime rate means that not only are our families and communities safer, but Florida is in a better position to create more opportunities for Floridians. This drop in crime shows everyone that Florida really is the best place to raise a family.”

“Making Florida a safe place to live, work, and raise a family is my main goal, and thanks to the hard work of our superior law enforcement officers and prosecutors, we have the lowest crime rate in 43 years. I am grateful to all of the public servants who work tirelessly to make our communities safer. Their work has made a tremendous difference, as evidenced by a crime rate that has dropped for the past three consecutive years,” stated Attorney General Pam Bondi.

The total number of crimes fell 3.8 percent from last year which translates into 27,380 fewer crimes in 2013.  The number of violent crimes was also down 2.4 percent. Murder is down 3.9 percent, forcible sex offenses and robbery each declined 2.8 percent and aggravated assault is down 2.1 percent.

“It is noteworthy, that while our population continues to increase, overall crime continues to decrease,” said Florida Department of Law Enforcement Commissioner Gerald Bailey. “My thanks to Florida’s dedicated law enforcement professionals for making this a better place to live.” 

“The results of the 2013 Semi-Annual Crime Report are testimony to the dedication and hard work of deputy sheriffs and law enforcement officers across the state. This report also demonstrates the effectiveness of sending deserving criminals to prison, keeping them away from innocent victims,” said Polk County Sheriff and FSA President Grady Judd.

"It's an honor to serve our state at a time when our crime rates have reached a historically low point," said Springfield Police Chief Philip Thorne, President of the Florida Police Chiefs Association. "Florida is an exceptional place to live and to visit, and our men and women in law enforcement play a huge part in maintaining that reputation."

There were 15 fewer victims of domestic violence in 2013 with cohabitants being the largest group of victims in this category, with spouses remaining the second largest group. 

“We are pleased to work hand in hand with our law enforcement partners on services and programs designed to help keep domestic violence survivors and their children safe, while holding perpetrators accountable for their violent acts,” said Florida Coalition Against Domestic Violence President and CEO Tiffany Carr.

Law enforcement officers made 904,634 arrests last year, almost 2,500 arrests per day.  The report also contains information on officers killed feloniously.  Two law enforcement officers died from criminal causes while on duty during 2013.  In addition, two law enforcement officers died accidentally during the course of duty.

The complete 2013 Annual Uniform Crime Report, including county-by-county breakdowns, can be found on FDLE’s website at www.fdle.state.fl.us/fsac/ucr/.

FDLE began tracking crime statistics in 1971.