For the second consecutive year, annual statistics compiled by the Lee County Sheriff's Office show an across the board drop in crime, officials there said Friday.
For 2009, the overall crime rate fell by more than 14 percent county-wide, the Lee County Sheriff's Office said in a prepared statement. In addition, total violent crimes including murder, robbery, and sex offenses saw a decrease of more than 16 percent. Homicides dropped nearly 30 percent and robberies are down almost 10 percent compared to 2008, officials said.
Non-violent crimes decreased as well. Burglaries and theft fell by more than 15 percent countywide. Combined, total violent and non-violent offenses decreased more than 15 percent countywide.
Each district also reflected a drop in overall crime:
Alpha (North) District - 15.7% (decrease)
Bravo (East) District - 18.66% (decrease)
Charlie (West) District - 7.01% (decrease)
Delta (South) District - 18.59% (decrease)
Echo (Central) District - 12.74% (decrease)
Gulf (Island Coast) District - 14.81% (decrease)
"In light of these challenging economic times, I am very proud of the efforts displayed by the brave men and women who represent this agency on a daily basis," said Sheriff Mike Scott in the statement release. "The numbers are encouraging, but we as an agency must continue our commitment to driving criminal elements out of Lee County. We will continue our aggressive stance on traffic stops, drug arrests and burglaries. And we'll continue to fight for the community by making Lee County an inhospitable place for criminals to reside."
Source: Lee County Sheriff's Office