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2011 Maine Crime Statistics
Crime in Maine increased +5.4% during 2011, according to the Maine Department of Public Safety, the largest jump since 1975.
Public Safety Commissioner John E. Morris said every crime category went up last year, except a slight decrease in robberies.
Morris said, “Drugs are the main reason for the increase as addicts commit crimes to feed their habits. Prescription drug abuse is responsible for much of the state’s drug problem. Although Maine continues to be one of the safest states in the country, the crime numbers are troubling.”
Burglaries increased for the third year in a row, up +10% in 2011 (8,079 reported in 2011 vs. 7,343 in 2010). Burglaries rose +8.6% in 2010.
Larceny-thefts increased in 2011 by +3.5% (25,344 thefts reported in 2011 vs. 24,490 reported in 2010). Larcenies rose +2.4% in 2120
Although robberies decreased -2.4% in 2011, Maine police reported only ten less cases of robberies than the year before (406 cases in 2011 vs. 416 cases in 2010). Robberies had increased in 2010 by +4.3% and in 2009 saw a +19.9% increase in robberies.
Both aggravated assaults and simple assaults increased in 2011. Aggravated assaults, which involve serious injury and usually a weapon, increased by +16.3% (884 cases in 2011 vs. 760 cases in 2010). Simple assaults increased by +15.3% (12,200 cases reported in 2011 vs. 10,581 simple assaults for 2010).
Arson saw an increase of +6.1% during 2011, with 15 additional cases reported (260 cases in 2011 vs. 245 cases in 2010). The value of the property damaged by arson fires jumped by $1.3 million, from $4,704,137 during 2010 to $6,010,974.
Motor vehicle thefts increased by +5.5% in 2011 (1039 vehicles were stolen in 2011 vs. 985 vehicles stolen in 2010).
There were 28 homicides in 2011 compared to 24 homicides in 2010.
There were 414 rape cases reported to law enforcement in 2011 which were 25 more cases than were reported in 2010. The percentage increase for rape-sexual assault was +6.4%.
Domestic violence assaults also increased during 2011 by +4.6% in 2011 (5,353 reported in 2011 vs. 5,117 reported in 2010). This increase reversed three straight years of declines in domestic violence assaults in Maine.
Commissioner Morris said, "It’s my hope that the increase in domestic and sexual assaults is because victims are more likely to report the crime because of greater response by law enforcement and the assistance available from many support groups throughout Maine to help victims. In addition, Governor LePage has made domestic violence a priority and that high profile leadership has brought renewed focus on the problem.”
The Maine Coalition to End Domestic Violence phone number is 866-834-HELP or www.mcedv.org and the Maine Coalition Against Sexual Assault's phone number is 800-871-7741 or www.mecasa.org . Both organizations have complete listings of local groups that offer assistance.
Crime in the rural areas increased +3.5% in 2011, while crime in the cities and towns increased by +6%.
In the rural areas, patrolled by State Police and sheriff's departments, all crimes showed increases except robbery and rape. Burglaries increased +1.1%, (2,929 incidents reported in 2011 vs. 2,898 incidents reported in 2010). Larceny-Thefts increased +3.6% (4,694 incidents reported in 2011 vs. 4,529 incidents reported in 2010). Aggravated assaults increased +20.3% for 2011 (255 incidents reported in 2011 vs. 212 incidents reported in 2010). Simple assaults reported a +15% increase for 2011 (2800 reported incidents vs. 2,436 reported incidents for 2010). Rural car thefts saw an increase of +17% for 2011 (440 vehicle thefts reported in 2011 vs. 376 vehicle thefts reported in 2010). Arsons doubled in the rural areas with 114 arson fires reported in 2011 vs. 57 in 2010.
Crimes going down in the rural areas were robberies which dropped - 36.6% (26 incidents reported for 2011 vs. 41 incidents reported for 2010), and rape had one less case reported than the year before (89 incidents reported in 2011 vs. 90 incidents reported in 2010), a -1.1% decrease.
Crime in urban areas increased in every category, except arson. Urban areas are made up of communities with full time police departments. Urban robbery increased by +1.3% (380 incidents reported vs. 375 incidents reported for 2010). Burglaries increased +15.9% (5,150 incidents reported vs. 4,445 incidents reported for 2010). Larceny-Theft showed an increase of +3.5% (20,650 incidents in 2011 vs. 19,961 reported in 2010). Rapes increased +8.7% (325 incidents reported for 2011 vs. 299 incidents reported in 2010). Aggravated assault increased by +14.8% (629 reported in 2011 vs. 548 reported in 2010). Simple assaults increased +15.4% (9,400 incidents reported for 2011 vs. 8,145 incidents reported for 2010). Car thefts increased +7.2% (653 vs. 609 for 2010). The only crime that decreased in the cities and towns was arson, -22.3% (146 incidents reported for 2011 vs. 188 reported for 2010).
The Uniform Crime Reporting Division (UCR) at the Maine Department of Public Safety tabulates the crime numbers each year. The numbers are based on reported crimes from local, county and state law enforcement agencies. The UCR statistics show that 36,248 crime index offenses were reported to police during 2011 compared to 34,407 during 2010 for a total crime rate increase of +5.4%.
The 36,248 crimes reported in 2011 represent a crime rate of 27.9 offenses per 1000 people in Maine. That number compares to the national crime rate of 33.5 offenses per 1,000 population in 2010.
The total number of adults and juveniles arrested, summoned or cited by police decreased in 2011 for the third year in a row. Adult arrests dropped -3.3% (46,221 in 2011 vs. 47,820 in 2010) and juvenile arrests decreased by -16.1% during 2011 (5,450 in 2011 vs. 6,492 in 2010).
The value of property stolen during 2011 was $29,652,360 compared to $24,973,032 in 2010. Police recovered $6,194,483 of stolen property during 2011 for a recovery rate of 23.2%.
The crime rate for violent crime in Maine continues to be one offense per 1,000 population compared to the national average of four per 1,000 population.