Date: February 04, 2003 "For Immediate Release"
To: News Media
From: Sheriff Lawrence W. Crow, Jr.
Media Contact:

Carrie Rodgers, (863) 534-6217 OR (863) 819-1856, Pager

Unincorporated Polk Crime Drops 8% during 2002, Second Decrease in a Row

Sheriff Lawrence W. Crow, Jr., is pleased to announce that for the second year in a row, crime in unincorporated Polk County, over which the Polk County Sheriff's Office has jurisdiction, has decreased.  From 2000 to 2001, crime went down 6.7%, and from 2002 to 2001, it continued on its decline, going down 8%. 

From 2001 to 2002, crime in every measured category had decreases, some of them double-digit, except for homicides, which went from 12 to 20.   Sheriff Crow attributes this widespread success to the proactive policing model he brought to the agency years ago, and to the valuable partnerships formed with other agencies and communities in Polk County.

Just as importantly, over the past 6 years, since the implementation of PROCAP (Proactive Community Attack on Problems) in 1997, crime is down 37%.  The total number of index crimes for unincorporated Polk in 2002 is 12,015, compared to 19,169 in 1997, although the population in the unincorporated areas increased by 30,000 people during that time frame.

It is also interesting to note that despite the rapidly growing population, the crime rate (crimes per 1,000 residents) in unincorporated Polk is currently 3.78%, based on an estimated 2002 population of 318,006.  The crime rate in unincorporated Polk has not been that low since 1972, when it was 3.35%. 

Unincorporated Polk statistics are as follows:
 

                        

1997

1998

1999

2000

2001

2002

% 01-02

%97-02

Homicide                

20

23

14

15

12

20

+67%

0%

Forced Sex Offenses     

274

281

366

373

264

229

-13%

-16%

Robberies              

413

340

270

255

243

206

-15%

-50%

Agg Assault/ Battery     

1482

1379

1068

1014

966

952

-2%

-36%

Burglaries              

5961

5302

3853

3779

3501

3062

-13%

-49%

Larcenies               

8489

8172

6143

7582

7062

6601

-7%

-22%

Vehicle Thefts          

2530

1819

1065

1107

985

945

-4%

-63%

TOTALS                 

19169

17316

12779

14125

13033

12015

-8%

-37%


 

Distribution: Undersheriff, Division Commanders, Communications, News Media

A text only version of this release is also available.

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