Crime rate drops in Manatee, spikes in Bradenton

MANATEE -- Manatee County's crime rate dropped by 1 percent in 2012. However, in the city of Bradenton, it spiked by 11.9 percent, according to statistics released Monday by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.

Records show that in 2011 there were 4,575.3 "index crimes" per 100,000 population countywide, down from 4,623.3 per 100,000 population in 2010. "Index crimes" are comprised of murders, rapes, robberies, aggravated assaults, burglaries, larcenies and motor vehicle thefts.

The rate of decline was almost 80 percent less than 4.7 percent drop reported recorded between 2009 and 2010.

When not factoring in population, the number of index crimes in Manatee dropped by 0.6 percent between 2010 and 2011. A year earlier, the count had dropped by 5.9 percent.

Crime was not down in all parts of the county.

In Bradenton, the crime rate jumped from 4,542.3 per 100,000 population in 2010 to 5,082.1 crimes per 100,000 population last year, according to FDLE. From 2009 to 2010, it had dropped by 9.5 percent.

Bradenton police reported increases in murders -- from zero in 2010 to 1 in 2011 -- aggravated assaults, burglaries and larcenies; and declines in rapes, robberies and motor vehicle thefts.

The rates also increased in Bradenton Beach, 106.7 percent, and the Manatee portion of Longboat Key, 197.8 percent.

The rates declined in Palmetto, 7.8 percent, and Holmes Beach, 28.2 percent, as well as in the jurisdiction of the Manatee County Sheriff's Office -- the city of Anna Maria and unincorporated Manatee, 5.1 percent, according to FDLE.

Countywide, there were increases in the number of larcenies and murders -- from 13 in 2010 to 15 last year; and declines in the other five categories of crime, according to FDLE.

Statewide, the number of crimes tracked by the FDLE dropped 0.1 percent while the crime rate, which factors in population growth, dropped by 0.8 percent.

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