The latest 2018 crime statistics released by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) show that the violent crime rate, the property crime rate, and the overall crime rate in Leon County are all down by over 7% when compared to 2017.
However, the FDLE data also shows that Leon County, for the fifth consecutive year, has the highest crime rate in Florida.
The Leon County crime rate was also down in 2017.
With crime trending down, why is Leon County still ranked number one?
The answer is that crime has been falling faster throughout the state than in Leon County over the last 15-20 years.
Let’s look at the violent crime rate.
In 2018 there 612 violent crime incidents per 100,000 people in Leon County. This is the lowest rate reported by FDLE in Leon County over the last 18 years. The rate has fallen approximately 25% since 2000-2010. Source
However, during this same period, the Florida violent crime rate has decreased approximately 43%. Source.
This trend is even more pronounced with property crimes, which is a larger driver of the overall crime rate.
In Leon County the property crime rate has declined approximately 16% when comparing the 2018 rate to the average rate from 2000-2010.
However, the 2018 property crime rate in Florida has declined approximately 43% when compared to the average statewide rate from 2000-2010. Source.
The numbers show that Leon County has had the number one crime rate in Florida – not because crime is increasing – but because crime is not falling as fast as the crime rates in other locations throughout Florida.
Our next report will look at the one exception to this decreasing trend – Tallahassee’s murder rate. Ironically, the murder rate has very little impact on the over all crime rate ranking, but it is a public relations nightmare.