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California’s largest cities saw fewer murders and violent crimes during the first half of 2018 than during the same period a year prior, new FBI statistics show.
California police in cities with more than 100,000 people reported 488 murders during the first half of 2018, down by 67 – or 12 percent – from the first half of 2017.
The number of violent crimes overall in California’s largest cities fell by a more modest amount – less than 1 percent – during the first half of 2018.
The largest numerical decline occurred in Fresno, which saw 18 murders in the first half of 2018, compared to 33 in the first half of 2017. In Sacramento, the number of murders fell from 21 to 17. In Modesto, the number fell from 13 to 8. The number of murders also fell nationwide.
Los Angeles, the largest city in California by far, had the most murders in the first half of 2018 – 133, down from 142 in 2017. San Bernardino had the highest murder rate, with 9.67 murders per 100,000 residents in the first half of 2018. Oakland had the second-highest, with 7.53. Both cities had similar rates in 2017.
The number of murders in California fell during much of the last decade until 2015, when murders rose sharply. The number began to fall again in 2017 – a trend that continued at least through the first half of 2018.