The crime rate within the jurisdiction of the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office declined for the second consecutive reporting period, according to figures released today by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement in its semi-annual Uniform Crime Report.
The UCR statistics show that for the first six months of 2012, major crimes dropped by 8.9% in comparison to the same time period in 2011.
FDLE reported earlier this year that for the full 12-months of 2011, the crime rate dropped 9.4% in comparison to 2010.
The UCR statistics are based on guidelines established for reportable crimes by FDLE.
The Sheriff’s Office provides law enforcement service to the City of Palm Coast and the unincorporated areas of the county.
“I am proud of the continued decrease in major crimes," said Flagler County Sheriff Donald W. Fleming in a statement. "I have worked hard to assure that this agency has the tools it needs to protect our community."
Fleming noted the creation of a Crime Suppression Team, which identifies crime trends and maps out crime prevention strategies that he said result in arrests. He also identified neighborhood watch and victim advocate programs as important to the drop.
"Our residents are engaged with this agency’s efforts to fight crime," Fleming said. "The benefit of that cooperation is showing results."
The figures released Thursday show forcible sex offenses, such as rape, dropped by 72.2%, from 18 in the first six months of 2011 to 5 this year. Aggravated assaultsdropped by 15.6 — from 90 in 2012 to 76 in 2012.
Domestic violence dropped by 17.3% during this period.
Drug-related arrests dropped 46.6% in the first six months of 2012 when compared to that same period in 2011.
“Our Narcotics Enforcement Team has worked tirelessly to fight prescription drug abuse
throughout the county," Fleming said. "We multiplied our manpower through our partnership with the FDLE."
During "Operation Pain Management" in July, for example, Flagler partnered with nearby counties to focus on arresting high-end suppliers and dealers on the street, Fleming said.
The UCR figures show burglaries dropped 16.4%. In January to June 2011, the agency reported 207 burglaries as compared to 173 for this latest reporting period.
Larcenies, which include shoplifting, thefts from motor vehicles and thefts of bicycles, dropped 5.2%.
During the first six months of 2012, the Sheriff's Office recovered nearly 25% of the value of reported stolen property. The UCR statistics show $1,073,005 worth of property was reported stolen, and $263,919 was recovered.