Crime

City says stats show Columbus crime's lowest since 2002

TIM CHITWOOD

tchitwood@ledger-enquirer.com

Columbus police mark bullet casings and other evidence as they investigate a shooting.
Columbus police mark bullet casings and other evidence as they investigate a shooting.

Columbus ended the year 2015 with the fewest crimes since 2002, according to statistics from the Columbus Police Department.

The city had 12,392 “Part I” crimes last year, a category encompassing homicides, rapes, robberies, assaults, burglaries, larcenies and auto thefts. The most recent year to which that’s comparable is 2012, when Columbus had 12,539 Part I crimes.

The numbers released Monday showed the city had a peak of 15,606 Part I crimes in 2009.

Police statistics archived by the Ledger-Enquirer show the total for 2015 is the lowest since 2002, when Columbus had 12,382 Part I crimes. The city had 12,143 in 2001 and 11,880 in 2000.

The numbers often fluctuate from year to year, as evidenced by these tallies since 2002: 13,815 in 2003; 13,425 in 2004; 14,117 in 2005; 15,012 in 2006; 15,107 in 2007; 15,430 in 2008; 15,606 in 2009; 14,426 in 2010; 13,345 in 2011; 12,539 in 2012; 13,454 in 2013; and 14,413 in 2014.

The city showed significant improvement in reducing burglaries, recording 2,560 for 2015, the lowest since 2004, when Columbus police reported 2,297.

Police Maj. Gil Slouchick credited the decline to “intelligence-based policing” and employing special units to areas most afflicted by home and business break-ins.

He said investigators targeted neighborhoods reporting a rash of burglaries, and detectives and patrol officers worked together to identify and capture suspects.

The major said local courts also have helped by treating suspects in property crimes less leniently than in the past, making them spend more time in jail or prison.

“That’s a direct result of putting the people committing these crimes in jail,” the major said of the drop in burglaries.

Both Slouchick and Mayor Teresa Tomlinson have said an issue in combating such property crime is the frequency with which the suspects arrested are juveniles, who are treated differently than adults.

Underage offenders charged in nonviolent crimes typically are not detained for long, and often are released directly to their parents’ or other guardians’ custody. 

Adult criminals will employ juveniles to commit such thefts because of that, authorities said.

Crime over time

Here’s a breakdown of crimes in specific categories since 2000, according to statistics police compiled:

Homicide: 17 last year; 22 in 2014; 22 in 2013; 17 in 2012; 17 in 2011; 15 in 2010; 13 in 2009; 30 in 2008, 24 in 2007; 17 in 2006; 22 in 2005; 25 in 2004; 19 in 2003; 20 in 2002; nine in 2001; 19 in 2000.

Rape: 68 last year; 47 in 2014; 36 in 2013; 30 in 2012; 40 in 2011; 40 in 2010; 49 in 2009; 67 in 2008; 57 in 2007; 19 in 2006; 24 in 2005; 30 in 2004; 22 in 2003; 25 in 2002; 18 in 2001; 24 in 2000.

Robbery: 545 last year; 511 in 2014; 481 in 2013; 423 in 2012; 418 in 2011; 477 in 2010; 566 in 2009; 638 in 2008; 618 in 2007; 582 in 2006; 446 in 2005; 395 in 2004; 331 in 2003; 359 in 2002; 440 in 2001; 439 in 2000.

Aggravated assault: 512 last year; 520 in 2014; 485 in 2013; 528 in 2012; 464 in 2011; 476 in 2010; 538 in 2009; 532 in 2008; 617 in 2007; 569 in 2006; 500 in 2005; 545 in 2004; 465 in 2003; 427 in 2002; 524 in 2001; 590 in 2000.

Burglary: 2,560 last year; 3,711 in 2014; 3,355 in 2013; 2,712 in 2012; 3,339 in 2011; 3,452 in 2010; 3,797 in 2009; 3,240 in 2008; 2,652 in 2007; 2,773 in 2006; 2,681 in 2005; 2,297 in 2004; 2,204 in 2003; 1,937 in 2002; 1,803 in 2001; 1,771 in 2000.

Larceny: 7.632 last year; 8,430 in 2014; 7,965 in 2013; 7,982 in 2012; 8,018 in 2011; 8,959 in 2010; 9,109 in 2009; 9,301 in 2008; 9,367 in 2007; 9,202 in 2006; 8,763 in 2005; 8,740 in 2004; 9,555 in 2003; 8,595 in 2002; 8,473 in 2001; 7,982 in 2000.

Auto theft: 1,057 last year; 1,172 in 2014; 1,110 in 2013; 847 in 2012; 1,049 in 2011; 1,007 in 2010; 1,534 in 2009; 1,622 in 2008; 1,772 in 2007; 1,850 in 2006; 1,681 in 2005; 1,484 in 2004; 1,219 in 2003; 1,019 in 2002; 876 in 2001; 1,055 in 2000.

876 in 2001; 1,055 in 2000.

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