Violent crime levels drop in Los Angeles

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Reversing a recent trend, overall crime dropped in the city of Los Angeles last year.

Some property and violent crimes had been trending upward from 2014-17, but 2018 saw that change.

Homicides, rapes, shootings and gang crime all saw significant drops.

"The real story is this is one of the safest times to live in Los Angeles in all of our history," said police Chief Michel Moore.

Moore and Mayor Eric Garcetti say reasons include an increase in officers, as well as more diversity in the police force and a philosophy that focuses more on intervention and keeping officers active in the community.

Garcetti said over the last two years, the LAPD has added the equivalent of 1 million patrol hours -half of that from a new arrangement to patrol the Metro transit system and half from using resources in new ways, including budgeting for more overtime.

For 2019, he said, the city is looking for even more ways to put more officers on the street, as well as employing new technology to fight and prevent crime.

In 2018, the city saw the following changes in some of the major crime categories:

Homicide: Down 8.2 percent.
Rape: Down 12.4 percent
Shooting victims: Down 4.5 percent.
Gang crime: Down 8 percent.
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