The number of rapes reported in New Orleans soared by 29 percent in 2013, a year that also saw spikes in robberies and thefts, says the Times-Picayune. Police Superintendent Ronal Serpas said the increase in reported rapes — from 136 in 2012 to 176 last year — was a sign that more women trust the department’s detectives enough to come forward as victims of a crime that often goes unreported.
Reported rapes have been on the rise since at least 2009, when 98 were reported. New Orleans officials have touted last year’s 19 percent decline in homicides. Assaults, burglaries and auto thefts also declined. The city’s overall number of serious crimes ticked up by 5 percent in 2013.