Violent crime, fueled by a nearly 20 percent jump in robberies, rose 5 percent in the first six months of this year compared with last year, says the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, citing police data. The figures show violent crime in the first six months of this year reached its highest level since 2008 and come after a jump in reports of violent crime last year. Police Chief Edward Flynn had been releasing quarterly data that showed continuous decreases in crime. The quarterly reports stopped after a Journal Sentinel investigation last year showed certain crimes were misreported, and the department re-examined its numbers. “The increase in violent crime is entirely driven by robberies,” Flynn said. The department began an initiative April 30 to combat the problem after a rash of armed robberies on the city’s north side. Smartphones were targeted in 30 percent of robberies, a trend seen across the U.S., so officers offered public education on installing tracking apps and passwords.