Violent Crime on the decrease?

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No simple solution for solving violent crimes

Posted Oct. 29, 2002 -- Murder, rape and other violent crimes committed throughout the country are up from last year, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It was the first time in a decade that crimes have shown a year-to-year increase.

The statistics are from the FBI report "Crime in the United States," an annual survey of crimes reported by 17,000 law enforcement agencies throughout the country.

Murders were up for the second year in a row after several years of decline, the Associated Press reported. About 15,980 murders occurred in 2001; 2.5 percent more than 2000. Forcible rapes were up .3 percent, while robberies rose 3.7 percent. The only violent crime that decreased was aggravated assault; it went down .5 percent in 2001.

At the same time, overall crime was down 10 percent compared to 1997, AP reported.

CMU expert expects 1 percent increase a year.

Abortion could be responsible for the drop in crime in the 1990s, but violent juveniles -- the "super predators" -- are coming in the next decade and it's going to be a blood bath.

Or maybe not.

A provocative study linking the legalization of abortion in the 1970s with the declining crime rate in the United States captured the nation's attention. The authors, Steven Levitt of the University of Chicago and John Donohue III of Stanford University Law School, argued that many people who would have been criminals of the 1990s were never born because they were aborted in the 1970s.

Legalized abortion, they said, may explain as much as half of the overall crime reduction between 1991 and 1997. Abortion might well be a factor in the drop in crime, but the study failed to give adequate attention to other factors,