Police data shows Phoenix crime trending downward for 1st half of 2023

Aug 7, 2023, 4:25 AM | Updated: 6:34 am

police tape...

Police tape (AP File Photo/Matt Rourke)

(AP File Photo/Matt Rourke)

PHOENIX — Crime trended downward for the first half of 2023 in Phoenix compared to last year, according to newly released data from the department.

While most violent crimes decreased, sexual assaults and shootings involving an officer increased, the Phoenix Police Department said last week.

Violent crime is down 2% and overall property crime decreased 19% compared to the first six months of 2022.

“I think we’ve got a good momentum going but there’s a lot more to do,” Phoenix Interim Police Chief Michael Sullivan said in a press release.

“This is work that continues every day and we are not going to let up.”

Overall violent crime is down

Phoenix saw a decrease in homicide and robberies compared to last year at 13.3% and 12.1%, respectively.

There were 98 murders in the first six months of 2023 compared to last year’s 113.

Aggravated assault and rape increased by approximately 0.2% and 10%.

At least 563 rapes reported in the first half of this year compared to 512 last year, and increase of 51.

Most property crimes are down but vehicle theft on the rise

Burglary, theft and arson are down 10%, 25.7% and 30.8%, respectively, compared to 2022.

However, motor vehicle thefts are up 4% and Kia and Hyundai vehicles have seen an increase in theft in 2023. Police believe the rise in theft of these particular makes is due to a social media challenge. The social media trend showed people how to break into various cars or use a USB cable to hotwire cars.

The department noted auto thefts would have decreased by 24% if the number of Kia and Hyundai thefts stayed the same as in 2022.

Shootings involving officers increase, gun crimes decrease

So far in 2023, there were 21 shootings involving officers compared to 13 in the first six months of 2022.

In those shootings, 16 suspects were armed with a firearm or replica firearm, 12 of those being prohibited possessors.

“A key component of the Crime Reduction Plan released in June is to focus on those who are illegally carrying firearms,” Sullivan said.

“It is clear from what we’ve seen so far this year that prohibited possessors pose a danger to our community given the fact that they are not only willing to illegally possess weapons but use them against police officers.”

Gun crimes have decreased by 15% in the number of shooting victims.

So far this year, 2,547 guns were impounded compared to 2,700 in 2022.

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Police data shows Phoenix crime trending downward for 1st half of 2023