There were a couple of interesting crime statistics related news stories last week. The first one from over at the Austin American Statesman showed that overall, the crime rate in Texas is down.
Compiling data from the FBI's Uniform Crime Report, DPS officials said that the state's overall crime rate — the number of crimes per 100,000 people — decreased by 8.3 percent in 2011 compared with 2010.
Texas saw significant declines in violent crimes between those years, including a 14.3 percent drop in murders, a 15.4 percent drop in robberies and a 4.3 percent drop in rapes, according to the data. In addition, property crimes, including burglary, theft and motor vehicle theft, dropped between about 8 percent and 9 percent each.
While there was good news in Texas, the news isn't so good in New Orleans. NPR had an interesting piece about the surge in murders in the Big Easy.
New Orleans now has the highest per capita murder rate in the country. Most of the killings are concentrated in the city's poorest neighborhoods — places like Central City, just a few blocks north of the stately mansions that line St. Charles Avenue.
One part of the piece that struck me was how the lack of trust of NOPD by community contributes to the cycle of retaliatory violence when victim's families take matters into their own hands because they can't count on the criminal justice system.