COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - The overall crime rate in Columbus is at its lowest level in 33 years, according to the Columbus Consolidated Government.
The crime rate shows a 39 percent decrease in part-one crimes since its height in 2009 when the city reported 15,812 part-one crimes. In 2017, 9,604 part-one crimes were reported which is a nine percent decrease from 2016.
Columbus did see an increase in murders in 2017 from the previous year. There were 24 murders in 2016 and 35 murders in 2017. However, the 2017 violent crime rate also includes rapes, robberies, and aggravated assaults, which fell by 13 percent.
"A reduction in crime rate does not mean there is no crime in Columbus, or that there is not serious crime in Columbus," said Mayor Teresa Tomlinson. "What it does mean is that we are making significant strides to reduce crime overall and that those reductions are being sustained over the long-term. We are particularly encouraged to see decreases in property crimes and in violent crimes. That being said, we still have a great deal of work ahead of us."
"Crime statistics fluctuate from year to year, but we are seeing sustained decreases over time," said Police Chief Rick Boren.