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Sheriff: Violent Crime Down 37 Percent in Hennepin County

2012 had one of the lowest levels of violent crime countywide in more than two decades.

Editor's Note: The following is a Hennepin County Sheriff's Office press release.

The Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office is releasing statistics that provide an estimate of the county’s violent crime in 2012.  The statistics show that violent crime has decreased countywide by 37% from 2006 to 2012.

2012 had one of the lowest levels of violent crime countywide in more than two decades.  

Violent crime is defined as: murder and manslaughter--non negligent, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault. The definition is from the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting Program. Year-to-date, from 2011-2012, there was an estimated 3% increase in violent crime countywide. Despite the slight increase year-to-date, last year’s overall violent crime numbers are historically low.  

Hennepin County Sheriff Rich Stanek credits several areas of law enforcement with contributing to the effective fight against violent crime: the expansion of partnerships among law enforcement agencies, enhanced criminal information sharing and analysis, and improved use of technology by law enforcement.

Sheriff Stanek encourages residents to help law enforcement in the continued effort to fight crime.  If you see suspicious activity, call 911.  Or, if you prefer to send an anonymous tip, text HCSOtip to 847 411.

Heretical1 March 08, 2013 at 09:46 PM
Until I see the data collection methods and statistical tools used in their analysis, I hold such pronouncements to be doubtful, dubious, and of disputable merit at best, particularly for the purposes of scientific evaluation; i.e., as a source of knowledge upon which trustworthy public opinion (let alone public policy) can be based. At worst, such pronouncements are negligently unqualified as to the validity of the conclusions offered in conjunction therewith. This is largely due to no independent corroboration or audit, and not providing both the most rudimentary metrics and basis for comparison, and the appropriate qualifying context for evaluating the proffered statistics. This article didn't so much as link to the underlying statistical report. Anyone who is familiar with social science-oriented statistical tools and research methods is aware of a myriad of data-skewing factors; not the least of which is fluctuations in immigrant population. Insofar as articles like this offer no critical scrutiny of their spoon-fed findings, nor even attempt to triangulate their pronouncements with trustworthy independent sources, i.e., which in this case would have attempted to replicate the official findings from the raw data, what this mind-pablum amounts to is, unfortunately, and what the entire "Patch" web presence appears to be generally, is a corporate-sycophantic propaganda organ. Too bad they don't publish it on newsprint. It would make fabulous bird cage liner.
Mike B. March 10, 2013 at 03:18 AM
Heretical1. Your points are 100% correct. Moreover, not just in Hennepin County, but across all levels of law enforcement: -Violent felonies are re-classified as misdemeanors, at the direction of politicians to make their cities appear safer than they really are. -In many cases, police can't respond to citizen calls. The police in many cities are overwhelmed by the amount of crime, and with fewer policemen on the street, crime goes unreported.
Heretical1 March 10, 2013 at 03:41 AM
First, the article's author created a glaring ambiguity when claiming that in 2012 Hennepin County "had one of the lowest levels of violent crime countywide in more than *two decades*"; the article only cited statistics released from 2006 to 2012. When coupled with Hennepin County Sheriff Rich Stanek's self-serving statement that he, "credits several areas of law enforcement ..." for the ostensible decline, taken collectively, it all strains the bounds of credulity. Secondly, an almost 40% drop in violent crime around a gang-ridden urban center formerly dubbed "Murderapolis" is probably an anomalous disparity at best; i.e., it's most likely an aberrant statistical outlier. It is especially suspect when the entire state of Minnesota is simultaneously ranked by the FBI in 2011 as being in the second tier of states for gang "infestation" (my term) nationally (https://www.fbi.gov/stats-services/publications/2011-national-gang-threat-assessment/2011-national-gang-threat-assessment-emerging-trends)). Oddly, it also follows the dissolution of the ill-fated, dedicated gang task force. Thirdly, it is likewise suspect when during the same time period the national violent crime rate has reportedly increased by 3%. (continued below)
Heretical1 March 10, 2013 at 03:48 AM
(continued from above) Therefore, when viewed in the context above, this discrepancy screams out for verification. Was this finding of a 37% decline in violent crime a rate or an aggregate figure? Was it compared to both official and self-reported victimization rates? Were immigrant population fluctuations controlled for? Were Stanek's data collection methods or his data production sources independently audited? Were crime reporting protocols examined county-wide for changes that may have affected the reported statistics? Taken as a whole (more like an informational black hole), this article raises more discrepancies and questions than it provides sound information upon which trustworthy judgments can rely. I am therefore compelled to dismiss it out of hand as unreliable, self-serving propaganda.
Heretical1 March 14, 2013 at 02:56 PM
Could this be happening here to? Experts: Dallas undercount of assaults builds 'artificial image' -->> http://www.dallasnews.com/news/community-news/dallas/headlines/20091214-Experts-Dallas-undercount-of-assaults-6330.ece Hundreds of assault cases misreported by Milwaukee Police Department City's violent crime rate lowered based on faulty data -->> http://www.jsonline.com/watchdog/watchdogreports/hundreds-of-assault-cases-misreported-by-milwaukee-police-department-v44ce4p-152862135.html Crime Drop? How Data-Driven Reporting Fueled an Investigation of the Milwaukee Police Department’s Flawed Data: The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel May-November 2012 -->> https://thecrimereport.s3.amazonaws.com/2/e7/0/1905/milwaukee_crime_underreporting_2013_case_study-1.pdf

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