New information out today about crime in Lexington may have you taking extra steps to protect your home. Lexington Police say property crimes are up, but violent crime in the city appears to be dropping.
Part 1 crimes include homicide, manslaughter, rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, larceny (theft), auto theft, and arson. Part 1 crimes increased 3.16% in 2009. There were 11,914 Part 1 Crimes in 2009, and 11,549 in 2008.
However, authorities say there is good news. They say violent crimes as a whole, especially assaults, were down in 2009 compared to 2008.
Lexington Police say they have targeted the areas where they see increases which they say have been impacted by the decline in the economy.
"Obviously when you have the economy that we've been faced with for the period of time that we have, you have people who are unemployed. I would think maybe there are more people who might be tempted to do things they wouldn't do if employed. I don't like to think that, but I think it is true", says Chief Ronnie Bastin with Lexington Police.
Included in the crime statistics were homicide numbers for last year. Louisville reported 63 homicides, Cincinnati reported 60 homicides, and Lexington had 14 homicides, which is one more than they saw in 2008.
Authorities say that is still one too many.
Taking a closer look at the homicide numbers for 2009, someone was charged for the crimes in roughly 93 percent of those homicides. The one left unsolved was the murder of a Lexington business owner.
Charlie Sowers was found dead by one of his co-workers at the bottom of his staircase at his home on Augusta Drive in late May of 2009. Workers became concerned when the didn't show up to Charlie's Bar, which he owned.
Nobody was ever charged in the case, which remains the only unsolved homicide from last year.
Lexington Police continue to investigate, looking for information that will lead them to the person responsible. If you have information on this case, call Crime Stoppers at 859-253-2020. The call is free and you could receive a cash reward if information in the case leads to an arrest.
As for homicide numbers for 2010, Lexington has already had two homicides, which they say is lower than the number at this time last year. They have charged people in those two homicides.