Despite a steady increase in population since 2006, Baltimore County has seen a remarkable 18 percent reduction in total crime.
Part I Crime – which includes the most serious types of violent and property crime – fell by 13.6 percent from 2006 through 2014**. Most notably, Part I Violent Crime – homicide, rape, robbery and aggravated assault – fell by an astounding 29 percent.
Baltimore County has experienced significant growth in recent years; the population is projected to be 824,000 in 2014, up 3.8 percent from 2006. More people typically results in more crime – and yet in Baltimore County some categories of crime are dropping to levels not seen since Jimmy Carter was president.
Aggravated assaults – the most serious assaults, usually involving use of a weapon and/or serious injury – are a good example. In 1977, with a population of 645,254, the county recorded 3,109 aggravated assaults; that is nearly 482 assaults per 100,000 residents. Last year, Baltimore County – with nearly 179,000 more people than in 1977 – recorded 2,530 aggravated assaults; that is 307 assaults per 100,000 residents.
The reduction in crime, said Police Chief Jim Johnson, can be attributed in part to a strategic approach by Baltimore County Police in identifying and addressing crime trends. This ranges from localized efforts, such as increasing the presence of officers in an area with an uptick in street crime, to broader campaigns. In 2012, for example, the BCoPD created a new law enforcement team dedicated to the growing problem of precious and scrap metal theft.
“What you’re seeing here is not a coincidental drop in crime,” Johnson said. “It’s the result of hard-working officers who analyze the crime reports and draw on their expertise to come up with real solutions. It’s the result of commanders who constantly keep an eye out for trends and problems and make sure resources are allocated effectively. It’s the result of detectives who know how to build solid cases that yield successful prosecutions and get serial offenders off our streets.
“And it’s clearly the result of a County administration willing to fund the resources to support the men and women of this Police Department.”
County Executive Kevin Kamenetz said he will continue to support the BCoPD by acquiring the most current equipment and working to attract and maintain dedicated, qualified personnel.
“When a family is looking to buy a home or a business is looking to open its doors, they want to establish themselves in a community where they feel welcome and safe,” Kamenetz said. “It’s clear from looking at these numbers that Baltimore County succeeds in doing that.”
**Crime statistics for 2014, not yet complete, are based on official projections by the BCoPD Criminal Information and Analysis Unit.
UCR Reported for Part I Violent Crime – Projected 2014** (PDF)
UCR Reported for Part I Crime – Projected 2014** (PDF)
UCR Reported for Total Crime – Projected 2014** (PDF)
Aggravated Assault Rates Per 100,000 Residents Vs. Population – 1977-2014** (PDF)