Statewide, in 2010, crime in Florida dropped another 6.6% putting it at its lowest mark in forty years. The Uniform Crime Report published recently has Florida officials claiming victory in their fight against crime. “I applaud the work of our chiefs, sheriffs, and state law enforcement” said Law Enforcement Commissioner Gerald Baily, calling these individuals and their cooperative effort “instrumental” in the drop.
According to the Orlando Sentinel, in counties with more than 1 million residents, Palm Beach, Hillsborough, and Orange Counties saw the biggest drops, with Orange county crime dropping 10.1% in 2010. The city of Orlando saw a 10.07 drop.
The overall crime rate has been falling since the late eighties when it peaked in the midst of a “crack cocaine epidemic”. This period was particularly violent for Florida and the nation as a whole.
The Uniform Crime Report measures reported crime from over 99% of law enforcement agencies within the state. Domestic violence offenses are measured separately and some areas saw a jump in this classification despite the overall decreases in crime.
Orange County, for instance, saw a jump in domestic violence murders up 3 from 16 to 19 in 2010. Orlando Police recorded a 9.5% jump in overall domestic violence offenses. So it seems they still have work to do in this arena.
If you only watched television as your source of news and the state of affairs in Florida and across the country, you would likely guess crime was static or even climbing. But sensationalism by the news media and the subconscious effects of crime dramas and “reality” shows has all led to an overwhelming and often unfounded fear of crime.
Despite lower crime rates, we can still expect more people to have alarms installed on their homes and weapons licensed in the name of home protection.
When you are accused of a crime, it doesn’t matter if crime is up or on the decline, you will likely be treated with the same level of fairness in the courts. At least that’s what we hope for. Having an experienced criminal defense attorney on your side can help ensure this fairness.
If you are accused of a crime and are in need of an advocate, contact our attorneys for a consultation today.