Statistics show crime in Kansas City is down in first half of 2014

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Mayor Sly James said Kansas City is becoming a safer city, and he has the numbers to prove it.

In the first half of 2014, overall crime was down 12 percent compared to last year. Police said that includes a "considerable" drop in violent crime.

There have been 42 homicides this year in Kansas City, but that is 25 fewer than this time last year.

Rapes, robberies and aggravated assaults are also down.

The police department said community initiatives, such as the Kansas City No Violence Alliance, have helped reduce crime numbers.

“That is the ultimate in community effort and collaborative approach to reduction of violent crime,” Captain Tye Grant with the Kansas City Police Department said.

They also credit "hot spot policing," targeting areas known for violent crime. Two of the four areas targeted haven't had any homicides this year.

But it's not all about arrests and enforcement.

“It wasn't just for visibility in the cars but to get out the cars and meet people. Build a relationship if you want to use that word. But get to know the people in that community and make yourself accessible as an officer to the people in that community,” Captain Grant said.

Kansas City is seeing a drop in property crimes as well, such as burglary and theft.

In fact, the only property crime seeing an increase is arson, with 13 more cases this year.

Police said they continue to come up with ways to reduce crime and won't be satisfied until the homicide rate is zero.

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