Minneapolis Police Say Robberies Up, Killings Down

There has been a rash of crimes in the Minneapolis area that targets people for iPads, iPhones, and other technological devices. This desire to steal these items off of people was part of the surge in the number of robberies that were seen in Minneapolis in 2013, particularly around the University of Minnesota campus.

There has been an overall increase in the amount of violent crime in the city, but there was some good news in an analysis performed by the Minneapolis police.

It was found that burglaries, homicides, and rapes declined from 2012 to 2013. This caused the overall violent crime rate to fall to a 30-year low, despite the increases in other types of crime.

While officers have stated that the increase in robberies in Minneapolis has been disappointing, many of those robberies occurred around the University of Minnesota campus where students carry a lot of electronic devices with them when walking between classes or when walking the campus at night.

Around the entire city, robberies increased by nearly 8 percent, but the total increase in north Minneapolis was 39 percent. People are also seeing more guns and replica guns used in these robberies. This has resulted in more officers being assigned to the robbery and assault unit. The mayor has stated that she supports funding that will help increase the number of sworn officers in the city. That number is currently at 812 officers, which is actually one of the lowest numbers in the past 10 years.

When robberies, homicides, rapes, and aggravated assaults are combined, they are up by just over 4 percent.

The Minneapolis Police Department has also made news with a new body-camera program. While pushing ahead, it has been questionable as to how fast the program can move forward.

Nonetheless, with a force that usually has between 850 and 900 officers, it is believed that the increase in violent crime has had something to do with the reduction in officers since the increase corresponds with the period in which the number of officers fell. The goal now is to employ 850 officers. This is in addition to covering the 30 officers per year that quit or retire and more retirements are expected this year before July 1. They are hoping to put recruits into the pipeline soon since it is expected that the summer crime season will be very busy.

Here are the overall statistics in regards to burglary:

Citywide, the number of burglary cases saw a 3. 5 percent drop, which means it dropped by 167 cases.

In the Second Precinct, there was a 13 percent drop in the number of burglaries.

In downtown, the southeast, northeast, and north Minneapolis, burglary numbers dropped. However, they slightly rose in the southwest and south parts of the city.

Even juvenile crime was decreased by 4.6 percent because of the fact the department has been working with the Minneapolis Youth Coordinating Board. The board sent individuals out into the Nicollet Mall every day of the week over the summer to talk with juveniles about crime. The program went to five days a week in the fall and wrapped up in November. The Downtown Youth Street Outreach Project also worked toward steering kids toward positive activities at the downtown YMCA, the library, and other places around the city.