Joyce Marie Taylor
The crime rate in Hamilton County fell two percent in 2011, as compared to 2010 rates, according to data from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement’s Annual Uniform Crime Report released on April 30.
Murders went down from one to zero, forcible rapes went down from four to one, robberies decreased from 15 to 9, aggravated assaults went from 61 to 45 and larcenies decreased from 187 to 169.
Burglaries jumped from 118 to 145 and motor vehicle thefts increased from 15 to 24 over the previous year.
“Our total crime index went down by more than the state average,” said Hamilton County Sheriff J. Harrell Reid. “Our violent crimes all went down; murder, rape, aggravated assault, all those were down. Our automobile thefts were up and our burglaries were up, and I think that’s due to the economic times that we’re having now, but anytime you have a decrease in crime, that’s a good thing.”
Statewide the crime rate fell 0.1 percent in 2011 over the previous year.
Around the region the figures vary.
“I think our people are doing a good job,” said Reid. “We are above the state average in the crimes solved and in the clearance rate, and also we’re ahead of the state average in the crime index and the percentage in decrease in crime.”