Floridas crime rate hit a 42-year low in 2012, according to an annual report released Thursday by Florida Department of Law Enforcement. Although the number of sex crimes and homicides slightly increased, the overall crime rate fell nearly 7 percent last year, with significant drops in burglaries, robberies and theft.
Liberty County, with a population of a little over 8,500, had the lowest number of violent crimes in the state. Miami-Dade County -- a county with a population of over 2.5 million -- had the highest number of violent crimes in Florida.
Crime rates are dropping nationally, too. A Pew Research Center analysis released last week showed a 49 percent decrease in the gun homicide rate from its high in 1993.
However, not many Americans are aware of the decrease in crimes. In fact, they think the amount of crimes has actually gone up. Another Pew study, conducted in March, found more than half of the respondents thought todays gun crime rate was higher than it was two decades ago.
Violent nonfatal crime rates (with or without a firearm) have dropped 72 percent over the past two decades.
The public may think gun violence has increased because they may be paying more attention to misguided directives from the Obama administration over gun control. They may also be keeping up with media frenzy over gun violence in the wake of incidents like the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre, but the statistics show the overall crime rate falling, as its been doing for the past 20 years.