Baltimore County Now
Police Chief James Johnson
I’m pleased to announce some extremely good news for Baltimore County: Our Year End Crime Report for 2012 is finished, and these new statistics show that crime is down across Baltimore County.
It’s down overall, and it’s down in virtually every single category. Crime dropped against the previous five-year average – the best way to get an accurate picture of our crime trends. It also fell compared to 2011, in almost every category.
These are some of the best numbers I’ve seen in my career – even when you consider that crime has been falling over the past several years.
The report we released today contains official data, compiled in accordance with the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting system.
Part I violent crime, the most serious types of violent crime, fell by 11.1 percent against the previous five-year average. Every category of Part I violent crime dropped except rape, which increased by a single case. Criminal homicide, robbery and aggravated assault are all down.
Part I property crime – burglary, theft, motor vehicle theft and arson, fell by 7.9 percent against the five-year average.
Part II crimes – everything from trespass to drug offenses – fell 5.2 percent.
Overall, crime in 2012 fell by 6.7 percent against the five-year average.
Looking at our 10 precincts, crime is down in every precinct except one. Some of these precinct level decreases are astounding. In White Marsh, for example, crime fell 14 percent against the five-year average. In Woodlawn, the drop is 11.6 percent.
In Towson, we saw an increase because of an increase in certain kinds of theft –shoplifting, theft from vehicle and theft from building. In the weeks and months to come, you will see law enforcement in Towson maintain an omnipresence and work even more closely with private security, both in the downtown area and elsewhere in the retail areas, so that we can bring these theft numbers down. We are adding three additional officers to patrol the entertainment district, an enhancement that will free up a car for patrol elsewhere in the precinct.
I cannot stress enough the significance of this crime report. You would have to go back 30 years to find crime rates as low as the ones we’re seeing now. Here’s another figure: Since I became Chief of Police, six years ago, the most serious kinds of violent crime have been reduced by 26.8 percent. Meanwhile, our case clearance rates continue to be far higher than the national averages.
This success doesn’t happen by accident. I thank everyone who has contributed – from the County Executive to our community partners to the many county agencies that support us every day. Most of all, I thank our officers, whose commitment, tenacity and expertise are the foundation of our achievements.