The LAPD misclassified nearly 1,200 violent crimes during a one-year span ending in September 2013, including hundreds of stabbings, beatings and robberies, reports the Los Angeles Times. The incidents were recorded as minor offenses and as a result did not appear in the LAPD’s published statistics on serious crime that officials and the public use to judge the department’s performance.
Nearly all the misclassified crimes were actually aggravated assaults. If those incidents had been recorded correctly, the total aggravated assaults for the 12-month period would have been almost 14% higher than the official figure, The Times found. The tally for violent crime overall would have been nearly 7% higher. “Whenever you reported a serious crime, they would find any way possible to make it a minor crime,” a retired detective said of police commanders. The LAPD responded that it “does not in any way encourage manipulating crime reporting or falsifying data.”