Skip navigation links
Sheriff Grady Judd
News Room
Inside PCSO
Fugitives & Offenders
Careers
Animal Control
Citizen Info
Crime Prevention
Inquiries
Contact Us
Stop Graffiti
Skip navigation links
Crime Stoppers
CyberStar
HIDTA
News Releases
Other Files

PCSO News Release

Media Contact:
Eleazer, Carrie

Public Information Officer 
News Date: 10/21/2011 

 Polk County Sheriff’s Office sees continued crime reduction in Polk County Jurisdiction  


Sheriff Grady Judd is pleased to report that crime in the Polk County Sheriff’s Office primary law enforcement response area1 is down 4.14% in the first six months of 2011 compared to the first six months of 2010.  

According to the Uniform Crime Report (UCR) statistics, as reported semi-annually and annually to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE), there were 232 fewer crimes overall in the first six months of 2011 than in the first six months of 2010 in the Sheriff’s Office primary jurisdiction.  There were 5,367 crimes in the first half of 2011 as compared to 5,599 crimes in the first half of 2010.  Compared to two years ago (2009), crime in the first six months of 2011 is down nearly 8% (7.9%). 

“I am very pleased that crime in Polk County is continuing its downward trend.  This crime reduction is in addition to an overall crime rate reduction of 6.8% in Polk County from 2009 to 2010.  Through proactive crime fighting and crime prevention efforts, and through the diligent and dedicated work of our members in partnership with the community, the overall crime rate in our Polk County jurisdictions is at historically low levels,” said Sheriff Grady Judd.  “Polk County continues to be a safe place to live, work, raise a family, and visit on vacation.” 

According to the UCR comparison, the number of non-violent crimes went down 263 crimes from 4,940 crimes to 4,677 crimes, a reduction of 5.32%.  Violent crimes went up only 31 crimes from 659 crimes to 690 crimes—this is after a dramatic decrease of 17.21% in violent crimes from 2009 to 2010.  To put this in perspective, compared to 2009 semi-annual numbers, violent crime is still down 13.3% (796 crimes in 2009 compared to 690 in 2011).  Violent crimes include: homicide, forced sex offenses, robbery, aggravated assault and battery.  Non-violent crimes include burglary, larceny and motor vehicle thefts. 

The most recently reported crime rate in the Polk County Sheriff’s Office jurisdiction is 2.965 in 2010 compared to 3.181 in 2009, a reduction of 6.80% from 2009 to 2010. The crime rate is calculated by dividing the jurisdictional population into the total crime volume (per 100 population).  Crime rates are calculated using annual data; therefore crime rates are not calculated in FDLE Semi-Annual Reports.  The Sheriff’s Office jurisdiction crime rate continues to be well below the state-wide average crime rate of 4.104.  The Polk/PCSO crime rate is nearly 28% less than the state crime rate. 

“We are enjoying historically low crime rates in Polk County and in Florida.  One of the most important reasons for this is we have insisted that convicted criminals go to prison for a minimum of 85% of their sentence since the mid 1990s.  This has been one of the most successful criminal justice reforms in our history.  Crime goes down when you put more criminals in prison where they belong.  Incapacitation works.  If the people predisposed to prey on innocents are in jail or prison, they can’t hurt us.”  —Sheriff Grady Judd 

I am concerned about the recent calls for ‘prison reform’ coming from the Florida Legislature.  Some of us who have been around a while know that when we become less serious about justly punishing criminals, people end up getting hurt and our property that we work hard for gets stolen.  The Florida Legislature and the Governor need to tread carefully, so any proposed ‘reform’ doesn’t end up balancing the state’s budget on the backs of innocent citizens.  Florida’s highest priority is public safety.  The state’s funding priorities must reflect this truth.  The bottom line:  Prison ‘reform’ must be focused on public safety, crime reduction, victim’s rights, and personal responsibility (negative consequences for breaking the law).  People who break the law should be punished—fairly, swiftly, and without apologies.  The more our criminal justice system does just that, the better—and safer—our communities will be.”  —Sheriff Grady Judd 

“Keeping criminals in jail and prison where they belong works—effective policing strategies also have a major impact on crime.  Comparing 2010 to 1997, when the Polk County Sheriff’s Office implemented its Proactive Community Attack on Problems (PROCAP) program, crime is down 40.6%, and the crime rate is down 55.6%.  PROCAP is a philosophy that emphasizes crime data analysis, community-oriented policing, and problem-oriented policing.  Rather than reacting, law enforcement efforts are focused on the systematic collection and analysis of intelligence and statistical data to determine where and when crime is occurring, and increasing law enforcement presence and formulating crime reduction strategies in identified areas to prevent future crimes.” –Sheriff Grady Judd

 

Polk County Sheriff’s Office Jurisdiction: Crime Category; Non-Violent Crime; Violent Crime; Total Crime; Population; Crime Volume Comparison:

 

Category

Jan-June 2010

Jan-June 2011

Difference 10/11

Homicide

5

9

80.00%

Forced Sex Offenses

76

72

-5.26%

Robberies

103

103

0%

Aggravated Assault/Battery

475

506

6.53%

Total Violent Crime

659

690

4.70%

Burglaries

1,569

1,572

0.19%

Larcenies

3,068

2,902

-5.41%

Motor Vehicle Thefts

303

203

-33%

Total Non-Violent Crime

4,940

4,677

-5.32%

Total Crime

5,599

5,367

-4.14%

 

 

Polk County Sheriff’s Office Jurisdiction: Non-Violent Crime; Violent Crime; Total Crime; Population; 2009-2010 Crime Rate Comparison:

 

Category

2009

2010

Difference 09/10

Total Non-Violent Crime

10,607

10,070

-5.06%

Total Violent Crime

1,504

1,308

-13.03%

Total Crime

12,111

11,378

-6.05%

Population

380,723

383,747

+0.79%

Crime Rate

3.181

2.965

-6.8%

 

 

[1] The Polk County Sheriff’s Office primary service area includes: unincorporated Polk County, Hillcrest Heights, Highland Park, Polk City, Frostproof, Eagle Lake, Ft. Meade, Dundee, and Mulberry.