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For Immediate Release:  
For Further Information:

August 8, 2006

Office of The Attorney General
- Zulima V. Farber, Attorney General

 

David Wald, OAG
609-292-4791
Capt. Albert Della Fave, State Police
609-882-2000 ext. 6514

 
2005 Crime Rate in New Jersey Drops 3 Percent in 2005
Violent Crime Rate Same as 2004; Nonviolent Crime Down 4 Percent

Trenton, N.J. – Attorney General Zulima V. Farber today released the 2005 Uniform Crime Report which shows that the overall crime rate in New Jersey dropped three percent compared to 2004, with violent crime virtually the same as the previous year and non-violent offenses down by four percent.

While the overall violent crime rate remained virtually the same, the number of murders increased 7 percent in 2005, compared to 2004, while rapes declined by 9 percent. Robbery rose by 1 percent and aggravated assault declined by less than one half of one percent.

Each of three categories of non-violent crime declined compared to a year earlier. Burglary decreased 5 percent, larceny by 2 percent, and motor vehicle theft decreased by 9 percent.

The annual Uniform Crime Report is prepared by the State Police Uniform Crime Reporting Unit based on information provided by municipal, county and state law enforcement agencies. The latest report records offenses from January 1, 2005 through December 31, 2005.

The total crime rate of the state is 26.9 victims for every 1,000 residents, a decrease of 4 percent compared to 2004, when the total crime index was 28.1 victims for every 1,000 residents. The violent crime rate was unchanged at 3.6 victims per 1,000 residents.

There are also separate statistical reports on bias crimes and domestic violence. The number of bias incidents reported by the police in 2005 dropped 9 percent compared to 2004. Domestic violence offenses reported declined by 1 percent.

Attorney General Farber said while the reduction in certain categories of crime was encouraging, the report’s data includes statistics that were especially troubling. “The increasing number of murders and the increased use of firearms make it imperative that we are vigilant in our fight against illegal gun trafficking and gang violence,’’ she said.

The overall statewide Crime Index total decreased 8,176 offenses, from 242,444 offenses reported in 2004 to 234,268 offenses reported last year. But there were 418 murders reported last year, compared to 392 the year earlier, an increase of 7 percent. Firearms were used in 66 percent, or 276 of the murders committed. In 2004, firearms were used in 58 percent of the reported murders.

Drug or gang-related murders accounted for 12 percent of the total in 2005.

Nineteen percent of all murder victims were in the age group of 25 to 29 years old; 95 percent of the victims in this age group were male and 65 percent were African-American.

There were 6,546 arrests reported for weapons offenses, an increase of 5 percent compared to 2004. There were also 56,972 drug arrests, an increase of 2 percent.

>> 2005 Uniform Crime Report (UCR) >> view all UCRs

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