Crime down by 17 percent in St. Charles

Published 12:00 am Saturday, February 15, 2014

By Monique Roth

LAPLACE – St. Charles Parish residents received good news recently when St. Charles Parish Sheriff Greg Champagne reported major crime in St. Charles Parish dropped nearly 17 percent in 2013.

The Sheriff’s Office released the Uniform Crime Reports for 2013 detailing data for seven index crimes including murder, rape, robbery, assault, burglary, auto theft and theft. The data was compiled for and sent to the FBI.

In 2012 there were 2,645 index crimes reported compared to the 2,203 reported in 2013, resulting in a 16.7 percent decrease.

Champagne said he was encouraged by the numbers this year, which are the lowest crime rates in five years. He added that he is happy the trend of rising crime rates has been erased.

The assault, burglary, auto theft and theft categories were the areas of the most decreased crime rates.

In 2013, assault reports were down 15 percent, burglary reports were down 27 percent, auto thefts were down 25 percent and theft reports were down 16 percent when compared to 2012 data.

Champagne said he urges residents to remain vigilant against somewhat preventable crimes, especially auto theft. Champagne said it is imperative for residents to keep their cars locked when unattended.

The categories of murder, rape and robbery each saw increases in 2013 when compared to 2012.

In 2013, five murders were reported compared to two in 2012. The number of rapes rose from eight to 11, and the number of robberies rose from 32 to 33.  

Champagne said the majority of 2013 rape cases were sexual abuse cases that in most instances were committed by family members. He added a few murders of 2013 were in a very concentrated area and were later realized to be linked crimes.

Champagne said his police units would continue to maintain a high level of visibility in the parish, especially in areas where certain types of crime seems to trend.