Violent and Property Crimes Decline in 2011

Thursday, February 09, 2012

The 2011 Part I Crime rate for Virginia Beach was 29.4 crimes per 1,000 residents, the lowest since 1965.  The crime rate for 2011 was calculated using the July 1 estimates from the Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service.  Part I Crimes include both violent crimes -- homicide, rape, robbery, and aggravated assault; and property crimes -- burglary, larceny, motor vehicle theft, and arson.  Annually, law enforcement agencies nationwide must report all crime uniformly to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

For 2011, violent crime, which accounts for only 6.0% of our reported Part I Crime, decreased by 4.7% when compared to 2010.  Homicides increased 7.1% from 14 to 15.  Robberies decreased 2.8% from 424 to 412.  Aggravated assaults decreased 10.4% from 326 to 292.  Rapes increased 13.7% from 51 to 58.  The Part I Crime rate for violent crime is 1.8 crimes per 1,000 residents for the City of Virginia Beach.  According to the FBI’s 2010 Crime in the United States, Virginia Beach has the lowest violent crime rate among all cities with a population of 300,000 or more.

Property crime accounted for 94.0% of reported Part I Crime and decreased 8.0%.  Burglaries decreased 3.2% and larcenies decreased 8.1%.  Motor vehicle thefts decreased 24.5% and arsons increased 0.8%.  The Part I Crime rate for property crime is 27.7 crimes per 1,000 residents.

The Virginia Beach Police Department cleared 62.8% of violent crime cases during 2011 and 28.2% of property crime cases.  According to the most recent figures from the FBI’s 2010 Crime in the United States, the average violent crime clearance rate for all cities with a population of 250,000 or more was 39.9% and the average property crime clearance rate was 13.8%.

Chief James Cervera said, “We are pleased that our overall crime rate has continued to decline over a ten year period, and especially so that violent crime in Virginia Beach declined another 4.7% last year.  However, we recognize that this decline means little to those who were victimized.  Our consistent above average clearance rate is the result of the hard working and the exceptionally talented men and women of the Virginia Beach Police Department and our highly successful Crime Solvers program.  We vow to remain focused on proactive crime prevention strategies and resolution, using a combination of community partners and technology to drive our deployment of manpower.  Citizen involvement has long contributed to the successes of the professional men and women of this department, and we need more – not less – active involvement to ensure that Virginia Beach remains one of the safest cities in the nation."

See the link below for an overall picture of crime trends.

This report was compiled by members of the Planning and Analysis staff.




Crime Comparison Chart.pdfCrime Comparison Chart.pdf