Reported crime down 14 percent in 2013

Overall incidents of crime in Rahway dropped by 14 percent from 2012 to 2013, including an 11-percent decline in nonviolent crime and 38 percent in violent crime, according to the latest Uniform Crime Report (UCR) released last week by the State Police.

It’s the second straight year that reported crime is down, at least according to the UCR. Overall crime dipped by 13 percent from 2011 to 2012 despite a 30-percent spike in robberies. (Note: Due to a calculating error in my spreadsheet formula, the original post indicated a 17-percent drop in crime last year.)

The overall crime index for Rahway was about 16.8 (per 1,000 residents) in 2013, down from 20.0. The biggest drops among categories was moBatmantor vehicle thefts, down from 57 to 37 (54 percent) and burglary, down to 87 from 110 (26 percent). Police Chief John Rodger credited the drop in burglary to the arrest of several people suspected in a string of burglaries in the region.

The only category to see an increase from 2012 to 2013 was rape, with 2 reported incidents compared to 1. Larceny was still the largest category, holding steady around 300 incidents but down 2 percent from 303 to 296 incidents and comprising 63 percent of the overall 468 incidents reported (and 70 percent of the nonviolent incidents).

That’s great, but how does Rahway compare to its neighbors, and Union County generally? Glad you asked, we’ll take a look at that in a future post but for now, we’ll focus on Rahway 2013 versus Rahway in recent years.

For a long-term glance at crime in Rahway, I’ve kept updating this spreadsheet of UCR-reported data from 1997 to 2013, not just because I’m a data nut but also because it offers more than a two-year snapshot, which can sometimes be misleading. Of course, UCR data has sometimes changed how it’s reported by or to the State Police, which might create some inconsistencies of its own when looking at multiple years.

Still, in looking at the 1997-2013 and the five- and 10-year averages for Rahway, reported crime incrime image 2013 was about half of what it was in the early 2000s when the crime index was closer to 30 and higher. In the late 1990s, the overall crime index (incidents per 1,000 residents) was closer to — and reached — 40. Most every category in Rahway was considerably lower for 2013 than the five-, 10- and 17-year averages, including about 20 percent lower than the five-year average and about 30 percent lower than the city’s 10-year average.

The complete 2013 Uniform Crime Report is available in .pdf form on the State Police website.