TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – Despite the growing number of “Florida Man” stories you may have seen in the news, crime in Florida is on the decline.
A newly-released 2018 Annual Uniform Crime Report from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement shows a steady decline in Florida’s crime rates since 2014, and a 9 percent drop compared to 2017.
Based on crime reports between January and December 2018, the report contained data from 393 of the state’s law enforcement agencies that participated, representing 99.9 percent of Florida’s population.
Among the findings, burglary is down nearly 20 percent across the state and domestic violence decreased by almost 2 percent. Violent crime decreased by 4.2 percent from 2017.
“Florida’s low crime rate is no accident. It is the result of hard work by our deputies, with the support from Florida’s strong public safety laws,” said President of the Florida Sheriffs Association and Columbia County Sheriff Mark Hunter in a statement. “A major reason we enjoy a 48-year low in the crime rate today is because criminals are serving the time they deserve and not creating more crime victims by receiving a ‘get out of jail free’ card.”
Crime rates by year
Take a look at how crime rates are declining in Florida. Hover over the bar to see the exact number.
Source: Florida Department of Law Enforcement
Not all the conclusions in the report are positive, though.
According to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, reported rape increased by 6.3 percent, and murder increased 4.7 since 2017.
“The fall of overall crime rates in 2018 is great news for all Floridians, but there’s still more work to be done,” Gov. Ron DeSantis said in a statement. “We must do everything we can to protect our citizens and visitors from senseless acts of targeted violence. My administration will continue to stand with our law enforcement personnel and move forward on key policies to protect our residents and keep our communities safe.”