Overall crime in Denver dropped slightly last year, but homcides were up nearly one third, from 51 to 65. The Denver Post says it was the first overall decrease in crime in several years. Crime had been up the last three years after a decade of decreasing crime rates. “It’s always dangerous to measure crime stats from year to year. You really do have to look at trends,” District Attorney Bill Ritter said. “We saw a significant reduction from 1993 to 2000. It was a phenomenal downturn in violent crime.”
Crimes against persons, including homicide, sex assault, robbery, and aggravated assault, were up 7.2 percent. “I’m not surprised at some of the increases, given the economy’s impact on crime and our drastically reduced staffing,” Denver Police Chief Gerry Whitman said.
Whitman said the increase in homicides shows the need for aggressive police work. “That’s why we’re sticking to our guns on mandatory arrests for domestic violence. So many of those homicides are domestic-related,” he said.