The crime rate in Manatee County fell by 4.9 percent in 2010, paced by drops in all types of crimes -- except rapes and burglaries, according to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.
In all, there were 14,994 crimes reported in Manatee County in 2010, 5.9 percent fewer than the 15,930 crimes reported a year earlier. When factoring the county's population, the crime rate dropped 4.9 percent, from 4,845 per 100,000 population in 2009 to 4,623 per 100,000 last year, according to FDLE.
Statewide, crime is at its lowest rate in Florida since the state began keeping track of it 40 years ago.
The types of crimes measured are murder, forcible rapes, robberies, aggravated assaults, burglaries, larcenies and motor vehicle thefts.
Countywide, the number of rapes increased by 8.9 percent, from 101 in 2009 to 110 in 2010.
Burglaries increased by 8.5 percent, from 3,323 in 2009 to 3,607 last year.
There were declines in the other categories of crime.
In unincorporated Manatee and in the city of Anna Maria, which are covered by the Manatee County Sheriff's Office, the crime rate dropped by 4.4. percent, to 4,704 per 100,000 population.
In the city of Bradenton, the crime dropped by 9.5 percent, to 4,542 per 100,000 population.
But in Palmetto, the crime increased by 4.3 percent, to 5,984 per 100,000 population.
On Anna Maria Island, there were large drops in the crime rates in the cities of Bradenton Beach, 68.4 percent , and Holmes Beach, 41 percent.
Gov. Rick Scott and FDLE Commissioner Gerald Bailey said Tuesday the crime rate in Florida dropped by 6.6 percent in 2010 from the 2009 figures which reflected 54,000 fewer crimes. There were 987 murders last year, which was 26 fewer than in 2009 and nearly 5,000 fewer robberies, a decrease of 15.6 percent.
However, the improved safety numbers come with a price. Six police officers have already been killed while doing their job in the first four months of 2011.
The figures are based on crimes for every 100,000 people.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.