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Low Crime Rates Reported In San Diego

— Crime rates in San Diego County, including for murder, reached 30-year lows in 2010, according to a study released Thursday.

The report from the San Diego Association of Governments showed the rate for violent crimes was 3.61 per 1,000 residents last year, down from 4.01 the year before. Violent crimes include murders, rapes, robberies and aggravated assaults.

Since SANDAG began compiling crime statistics from the region's 18 cities and unincorporated county communities in 1981, the worst year for violent crimes was 9.76 per 1,000 residents in 1992.

The 67 murders last year were the lowest since the agency started keeping records.

The 2010 rate for property offenses -- like burglary, theft and vehicle theft, was 21.04 per 1,000 residents, down from 21.89 in 2009, reflecting a seventh straight annual decrease, according to SANDAG. The dollar value of the loss was $174.1 million last year, down from 194.5 million the year before.

Property crimes hit a 30-year high in 1988, with 67.26 incidents per 1,000 residents.

"Overall, the good news continues in the San Diego region,'' said Dr. Cynthia Burke, SANDAG director of criminal justice research. "Crime continued to decrease in the region in spite of concerns that troubles with the economy would result in increased property crime.''

To the contrary, the number of vehicles stolen was nearly half of what it was in 2007 -- 12,557 compared to 24,435, according to the study. Reported burglaries totaled 14,071 in 2010, the lowest since SANDAG started keeping countywide records, and well under half the amounts during the 1980s. The number of thefts were also down.

Burglaries and thefts were at 30-year lows.

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