The number of reported crimes in New York City for the first quarter of 2009 was the lowest in more than 40 years, reports the Associated Press. The number seemed to defy fears that the sinking economy will send the city back to what the AP called “the bad old days of rampant murders and rough streets.” Through the end of March, overall crime dropped 13.5 percent from a year ago, down in every major category. There were 89 homicides, compared with 116 last year.
The U.S. is in the worst recession since the 1930s; the city’s unemployment rate was 8.1 percent in March, up from 5.1 percent a year ago. “I know there’s an anticipation  that crime would go up as a result of the economic turndown. We just haven’t experienced that,” said Police Commissioner Ray Kelly. New York City’s homcide total was 2,245 in 1990, making it the murder capital of the nation. Crime has steadily decreased since then, and in 2007 the city saw the fewest murders since comparable record-keeping began in the 1960s.