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Crime Drops In Maine Overall, But Rapes And Homicides Increase

Crime in Maine decreased in 2017, the sixth year in a row that the state has seen reductions in crime overall.  That includes incidents of domestic violence, which fell by 10.6 percent. But incidents of rape and other violent crimes increased significantly.That’s according to Maine’s Department of Public Safety, which released its annual crime report Thursday.

Overall, crime in Maine went down 8.2 percent last year. During the past six years, crime has dropped a total of 46.8 percent.

“The positive numbers are a team effort by law enforcement, prosecutors, the courts and advocacy groups,” says Public Safety Commissioner John Morris, in a statement.

Morris says the six-year decline is “unprecedented.” But he says much of the state’s crime is still related to drug abuse.

And some violent crimes increased in 2017. In addition to incidents of rape, which went up 17 percent – the third year reported rape incidents have increased – there were more homicides, assaults and motor vehicle thefts in Maine last year.

Homicides increased from 18 in 2016 to 21 last year.  Simple assaults and vehicle thefts also increased, both by about 2.2 percent.

But robberies, burglaries, larceny, aggravated assaults and arson incidents fell significantly, in some categories by double digits.  Crime fell in both Maine’s rural and urban areas, officials say.