Prince George’s County Executive Rushern Baker III and Prince George’s County Police Chief Henry P. Stawinski III announced Monday the county saw a 6.6% drop in overall violent crime in 2017. This marks the 7th year in a row where the overall violent crime number dropped from the previous year. This continuing downward trajectory translates into a more than 50% decline in overall violent crime in the county over the past 7 years.
“Over the past seven years, we have seen an incredible reduction in both violent crime and the volume of crimes in Prince George’s County,” said Prince George’s County Executive Rushern L. Baker, III. “This reduction in crime is a key reason for the County’s economic success that is leading the region and state as well as improving our quality of life and subsequent state-best increase in our residential and commercial property values.”
In a county of almost 1 million residents living across nearly 500 square miles, there were 80 homicides in 2017 which was 18 fewer homicides than the previous year. While one life lost is one too many, this 18% drop in homicides further represents the downward trend in violent crime. When our detectives were called upon to solve a homicide, to bring a killer(s) to justice, and to help bring closure to a grieving family, they answered the call with a 83% clearance rate in 2017 as compared to the national closure rate which stands around 60%, according to the latest FBI stats.
“I am very proud of the men and women of the Prince George’s County Police Department and of the community as we worked together to organize against and prevent crime. Of note is the reduction in homicides and every category of robbery,” said Chief Hank Stawinski.
Last summer, we saw a 14% increase in the number of theft from autos across our county. We organized the community in the fight against this type of crime by releasing a special video to the public from the Chief, we sent out daily updates via Twitter on county wide theft from auto numbers with pictures of damaged vehicles, and we continue to place warning cards on vehicles where officers witness valuables out in plain sight. Thanks to those agency and community efforts, we tackled thefts from autos and reversed the increase by ending the year with a 4% drop in theft from autos.