Phoenix Violent Crime Rises, In Part Because of Better Reporting


Violent crime fell to such historically low levels during the Great Recession that it had nowhere to go but up, experts say, which is what happened last year in many large cities even as property crime continued to drop. The Phoenix area reported the same trend, says the Arizona Republic. Some of the violent crime is a simple recovery from historically low figures, but the slight increase can also be attributed to changes like programs that encourage undocumented immigrants and domestic-violence victims to report the crimes committed against them.

State law in 2010 added the crime of aggravated assault by strangulation. A program to educate police officers about the signs of strangulation in domestic-violence victims led to a 42 percent increase in felony strangulation cases filed by prosecutors in the first half of 2012. “When you talk about an increase, think about the things the community has done to get the victims to come forward,” said Sgt. Trent Crump, a Phoenix police spokesman. “That's a good thing. But you know on the back side of that double-edged sword, you're going to have a higher number of cases reported.”

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