The official numbers are in from NOPD: citywide Uniform Crime Report Part I crime rose 4.4 percent from 2015 to 2016. This largely jives with the forecast I made in late December of a roughly 5 percent jump last year.Much of last year’s rise in UCR crime likely comes from improved response times and a full year of better sex crime reporting, the latter of which undoubtedly contributed to the 31 percent jump in rape last year. Armed robberies were down 9.1 percent, as expected, though an 11.7 percent rise in simple robberies means that overall robberies were down just 3.5 percent from 2015 to 2016.

Some perspective is important when reviewing these numbers. The 4.4 percent rise in 2016 represents a 1.6 percent decline from 2014’s peak, but it is also 30 percent higher than 2010’s UCR count. UCR crimes jumped big time from 2013 to 2014 and this year’s count shows that things have been roughly steady ever since.

The other crime trend in need of some historical perspective is armed robberies. While armed robberies fell in 2016, the 1,445 total robberies last year still represents a 51.6 percent increase over 2010’s armed and simple robbery total. These crimes remain a consistent problem for New Orleans despite the drop in armed robberies a year ago.