Image by North Charleston North Charleston Police Chief Jon Zumalt at a press conference.
According to the FBI's Crime Across the U.S. report, both the Lowcountry and the nation saw a drop in violent crimes and property crimes in 2010.
According to the FBI, "the 2010 statistics show that the estimated volumes of violent and property crimes declined 6% and 2.7% respectively, when compared with the 2009 estimates. The violent crime rate for the year was 403.6 offenses per 100,000 inhabitants (a 6.5 percent decrease from the 2009 rate), and the property crime rate was 2,941.9 offenses per 100,000 persons (a 3.3 percent decrease from the 2009 figure)."
That makes for four years in a row the rate has fallen.
In Charleston, violent crime fell by 28% to 429 and in North Charleston it fell by 14% to 851. Meanwhile, Summerville and Mount Pleasant each increased by 13% to 157 and 155, respectively but both cities are rapidly expanding, obscuring the true trend.
In South Carolina, the rate fell by 10% overall.
While the downward tren across the nation clearly has at least some local implications, what do local leaders attribute the generally greater local change to? Better community involvement.
The Post and Courier spells that out in a written report (read it here) and NBC News 2 has a video report (watch that here.) The Post and Courier also has a nice table compiled of local statistics (get that here.)
There's a wealth of data that can be analyzed online (see that here.)