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Crime in Cambridge lowest in 55 years: Police

A data analysis by the Cambrdige Police shows crime in 2016 dropped for sixth straight year.
Harvard Square, Cambridge Creative Commons

Crime in Cambridge is at its lowest level in 55 years, according to data the department released this week.

The Cambridge Police Department's Crime Analysis Unit compiled a 2016 Cambridge Crime Snapshot, which reports that crime in that city has decreased for the sixth consecutive year.

The vast majority of crime reported to police in the city of roughly 105,000 people involves property crime, not violent crime, according to police statistics.

Serious crimes decreased by 8 percent, with a total of 2,621 crimes reported to the city. That's 233 fewer than the number of incidents recorded in 2015.

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The data looks at the "Part 1 Index Crimes" reported to Cambridge Police each year, which include homicide, rape, burglary, aggravated assault, larceny and motor vehicle theft, according to the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting Program.

Violent crime encompases homicide, rape, robbery and assault. In 2016, there were two homicides in Cambridge, down from three in 2015. Violent crime in total was down to 271 incidents (the majority being assaults) in 2016, versus 291 total violent crimes in 2015.

Property crimes, meaning burglary, larceny and motor vehicle theft, totaled 2,350 incidents in 2016, down from 2,563 in 2015.

Cambridge Police said crime had dropped to "unprecedented levels not recorded since 1961."

Overall crime in Cambridge peaked in 1974, according to data, with 10,715 total incidents reported that year. The most violent year was 1990, according to police, with more than 1,000 of the nearly 7,000 total reported incidents concerning violent crime.

“Thanks to our officers, the collaborative and progressive approach of this department, Cambridge is safer today than it has been at any point in recent history,” Cambridge Police Interim Commissioner Brent Larrabee said in a statement."These efforts, coupled with strong community collaboration and a commitment to deploying resources based on data and analysis, have been instrumental in making Cambridge a safer and more welcoming place for all who live, work and visit this city.”

 
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