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Good News In St. Louis Crime Statistics

(via Flickr/davidsonscott15)

When the 2012 crime statistics were reported last week, there was good news in both St. Louis City and the portion of St. Louis County patrolled by St. Louis County Police. 

In St. Louis City, crime fell from 2011 to an overall per capita rate that is lower than in 1970.  The report showed a continuing decline in serious violent crime, although the number of homicides was the same as in 2011.  Aggravated assaults were up in the first part of the year, but after the police department implemented new measures in August, the numbers declined.  Rape was up as well, but the rise may be due to greater willingness by victims to report their assaults and new, broader definitions of rape.

University of Missouri – St. Louis Professor of Criminology and Criminal Justice Richard Rosenfeld was Don Marsh’s guest on “St. Louis on the Air” to discuss the crime statistics report. In addition to his regular duties, he is currently working in the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department.

Professor Rosenfeld described the city police department’s new “hot spot” strategy that places more officers in areas where crime is more rampant and during hours when the most crime is committed.    He also discussed the importance of citizen involvement.  When neighbors work with each other and with the police, crime rates decrease.

Rosenfeld noted that crime trends were similar in St. Louis County.  However, the report only covers unincorporated St. Louis County and the 17 municipalities patrolled by the St. Louis County Police Department, which includes about 40 percent of county residents.

In the area of vehicle thefts, Rosenfeld noted that rates are up, but the majority of these are scooters, motorcycles and older model cars.


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Mary Edwards came to St. Louis Public Radio in 1974, just after finishing her Bachelor of Music degree at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. She has served the station in a number of capacities over the years. From 1988-2014 she also taught an undergraduate class in radio production at Webster University. Mary was inducted into the St. Louis Media History Foundation Media Hall of Fame in April, 2017 and received the Gateway Media Literacy Partners' Charles Klotzer Media Literacy Award in 2012. Mary retired from St. Louis Public Radio in 2018, but still serves the station as a St. Louis Symphony Producer.
Alex is the executive producer of "St. Louis on the Air" at St. Louis Public Radio.
Don Marsh served as host of St. Louis Public Radio’s “St. Louis on the Air" from 2005 to 2019, bringing discussions of significant topics to listeners' ears at noon Monday through Friday. Don has been an active journalist for 58 years in print, radio and television. He has won 12 Regional Emmy Awards for writing, reporting, and producing. He is the recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, was inducted into the St. Louis Media Hall of Fame in 2013, and named “Media Person of the Year” by the St. Louis Press Club in 2015. He has published three books: his most recent, “Coming of Age, Liver Spots and All: A Humorous Look at the Wonders of Getting Old,” “Flash Frames: Journey of a Journeyman Journalist” and “How to be Rude (Politely).” He holds an honorary Doctor of Arts and Letters degree from the University of Missouri-St. Louis.

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