NYPD crime stats: May murders hit record low, but hate crimes rise sharply

Tuesday, June 4, 2019
NEW YORK (WABC) -- The number of murders and shooting incidents in New York City in May was the lowest recorded total in any May of the CompStat era, according to new crime statistics released by the NYPD Tuesday.

"In terms of statistics we've been keeping for decades, this was the safest may we have ever had," Mayor Bill de Blasio said.

Overall annual crime is down by more than 2,300 incidents for the year, a 6.2 percent decrease. However, hate crimes have increased a whopping 90 percent.

Police say anti-Semitic crimes make up more than half of all the reported hate crimes, and last year at this time, there were 58 incidents. This year, it's jumped to 110.

The numbers are so troubling that the mayor will open a hate crimes office this summer instead of in November, which will focus on helping victims and educating young people about bigotry.

"It is comforting to know we're taking it as seriously as possible," said Joseph Potasnik, with the New York Board of Rabbis. "And I do think we've got to do a better job in reaching young people today."

The NYPD says there is no place for such crimes in New York City, and the detectives with the Hate Crimes Task Force are working diligently to eliminate bias incidents and bring perpetrators to justice.

There were 15 murders recorded in May, down from 25 in May of 2018, while the 106 total murders is 15 fewer than this point last year.

"We can't take this as a given," NYPD Commissioner James O'Neill said. "We all have to continue to work, not just us, the entire criminal justice system, it's got to be, quite frankly, all 8.6 million New Yorkers working to do this."

Rapes, robberies, felony assaults, burglaries and grand larcenies also declined both compared to last May and to last year through May.

"New York City has seen a continued reduction in crime, which is reflective of the hard work of members of the NYPD and the commitment of residents across the city," O'Neill said. "Safety is a shared responsibility, and through neighborhood policing and focusing on criminals with precision, we will continue to strengthen bonds with members of the community."

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