State News

Homicides up in NC, while overall crime rate down last year

Posted July 12, 2012

— North Carolina's homicide rate was up 5.9 percent last year over 2010, but the rate for all violent crimes and the overall crime rate were down, Attorney General Roy Cooper said Thursday.

Reports of crime statewide fell by 0.9 percent in 2011, making it North Carolina's lowest crime rate since 1977, Cooper said. The violent crime rate dropped by 5.2 percent during the year.

The state has a long-term trend of falling crime rates and has now set records three straight years, but Cooper expressed concern that successive years of budget cuts will make it harder for law enforcement to do its job, especially as the state battles a surge in some crimes that aren’t included in the index crime rate, such as methamphetamine labs, prescription drug abuse and child pornography and exploitation.

NC Department of Justice, NC Attorney General seal N.C. 2011 crime statistics

"(We need) more DNA scientists, more computer forensic experts, drug toxicologists, and SBI agents," Cooper said at a news conference. "Local law enforcement joined with us to ask legislators to do just that, but they refused and instead cut public safety statewide."

Funding to the state Department of Public Safety and Department of Justice was cut by a combined $30 million in this year's budget, he said.

The state compiles annual crime statistics based on data provided by local law enforcement agencies across North Carolina.

In 2011, there were 3,920 crimes reported per 100,000 residents in North Carolina, compared with 3,955 per 100,000 residents the preceding year. The rate of violent crimes dropped from 374 to 355 per 100,000 residents, while property crimes went from 3,581 to 3,565 per 100,000 residents.

Attorney General Roy Cooper AG says budget cuts could hinder law enforcement efforts

Homicides were the notable exception to the drop in crimes. Last year, there were 5.4 killings per 100,000 residents, up from 5.1 in 2010 – the lowest homicide rate since statewide record keeping started in 1973.

In the Triangle, crime was up 2 percent in Raleigh last year, fueled by a spike in property crimes like larceny and motor vehicle theft. Cary's crime rate dropped by 1 percent, and crime in Durham was flat from 2010.

The crime rates in Fayetteville and Rocky Mount each rose 2 percent last year.

Wake County's crime rate was up 6 percent in 2011 – property crimes were the driving factor – while Johnston County's rate showed a 1 percent increase.

46 Comments

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  • homefree Jul 13, 2012

    It's a shame Cooper has to turn this into a political issue. Always pushing for more funds with the scare tactic. I really get tired of the "end of the world" press conferences. Most folks have made changes in the there lives over the past 3 years because of the economy..time for our state to realize the same.

  • thepeopleschamp Jul 12, 2012

    "people's champ you also thank it is ok for an officer to violate a traffic law and not be held responsible." jjsmith1973

    When did this happen? I certainly don't "thank" it is ok for officers to violate traffic laws. Perhaps you can show me where I ever made such a statement. I don't mean to be in your head, but you have a lot of misconceptions about my comments.

  • thepeopleschamp Jul 12, 2012

    "And the original charge that got them there is drugs but people's champ you also thank it is ok for an officer to violate a traffic law and not be held responsible. So we know where you stand. Go take your time to post my post on another web site so you can get the like mind to boost your ego back up on the golo site. As for anyone else you should know the people's champ post your really here on a law enforcement web site if you disagree with questionable criminal justice system practices" jjsmith1973

    What are you talking about? I haven't posted anything anywhere except my own comments. You have proof of this allegation? What law enforcement web site are talking about? You obviously have me mixed up with someone else.

  • Obama our Savior Jul 12, 2012

    It is no coincidence that WRAL has this story and on the opposite page a story on conceal carry permits. Their anti-2nd amendment stance is clear. Power of the media…pretend to be reporting news but putting your agenda through!
    truth9806

    Don't insult us. I think most of us are capable of foriming our own thoughts and opinions, depsite the way inforamtion is delivered to us.

  • truth9806 Jul 12, 2012

    It is no coincidence that WRAL has this story and on the opposite page a story on conceal carry permits. Their anti-2nd amendment stance is clear. Power of the media…pretend to be reporting news but putting your agenda through!

  • muggs Jul 12, 2012

    I can't blame Obama for this,this has been going on since the late 70's,but actually has a history as far back as one can remember,gangs have been here but the level of violence has gotten worse,some of the parents of these gang members were once themselves in gangs,the mentality has to change before anything else,some know no other way of life,incarceration does not work but only sends them into a environment much like the streets they came from,neighborhood programs amoung the citizans have to be implemented,LEO's cannot do it all,and the admission of wrong doing has to be recognized by the parents instead of claiming discrimination and profiling,all ethnic groups participate in this way of life.

  • WooHoo2You Jul 12, 2012

    VariousGood,

    -well isn't this just ironic.

    Some crime up most others down?

    - first Chicago, now the entire USA.

    Huh?

    - you can see WRAL takes its orders from CBS.

    Well, WRAL is a CBS affiliate.

    - All in the name of Obama and the UN to ban guns in the USA.

    What does this have to do with Obama or banning guns? You do realize you can murder someone with you bare hands? BTW, what guns (or gun rights) has Obama taken or restricted?

    - It's called conditioning (and propaganda).

    It’s called statistics….they report them every year no matter the result.

    -You should learn to see through it.

    You should learn not everything is a conspiracy.

  • smegma Jul 12, 2012

    well isn't this just ironic. first Chicago, now the entire USA. you can see WRAL takes its orders from CBS. All in the name of Obama and the UN to ban guns in the USA. It's called conditioning (and propaganda). You should learn to see through it.

  • jjsmith1973 Jul 12, 2012

    Off to work I go while it is still not against the law

  • jjsmith1973 Jul 12, 2012

    I do address lawyers and law makers about these issues

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