Crime numbers
fall statewide

Major crimes in
the first six months
of 2004 dropped 10.2%

Overall crime in Hawaii decreased in every county for the first half of last year, according to statistics released by the state yesterday.

In the first six months of 2004, there were 32,110 major crimes, down 10.2 percent from the year before, according to the Attorney General's semiannual Uniform Crime Report. Property crimes decreased 10 percent across the board, while violent crimes overall decreased 12.6 percent.

Murder was the exception, with 16 reported for the first half of 2004, a 45 percent increase over the same period in 2003. But officials noted that 2003 had the lowest murder total since 1968, with 22 for the entire year.

"Usually, we have 40 to 45 murders per year, so 2003 was an exceptionally low year," said Paul Perrone, chief of research and statistics for the state attorney general's office. "Besides that, however, I've never seen across-the-board decreases for both violent and property crimes in all four counties.

"Usually, there's always a county or type of crime which bucks the trend, but not this time," he said.


According to the Attorney General report, rapes dropped 7.3 percent and robberies fell 42.5 percent, while assaults went up 7.3 percent. For property crimes, there was a 7.6 percent decrease in burglaries, an 11.5 percent decrease in thefts and a 6.8 percent decrease in auto thefts.

Here is a look at each county:

» Hawaii County showed the greatest decrease, with a 16.9 percent drop in overall crime.
» Maui County followed with an 11.2 percent decrease.
» The City and County of Honolulu showed a 9.3 percent decrease.
» Kauai showed a drop of 7.1 percent.

The number of arrests also dropped across the board -- 17.3 percent for adults and 3.5 percent for juveniles -- continuing a six-year trend that began in 1998, when juvenile arrests for serious crimes began to decrease each consecutive year.


"Juvenile crimes have fallen off the map," Perrone said.

Perrone noted that arrests involving non-opium and non-coca-based narcotics, including Ecstasy, LSD and crystal methamphetamine, rose 18.8 percent, with most of the increase coming from the neighbor islands.

The category termed "non-narcotics" shows a 61.5 percent increase in arrests on the Big Island, a 53.7 percent increase in Maui County and a 14.8 percent increase on Kauai. Non-narcotic arrests in Honolulu showed the only decrease, with a 13.1 percent drop during the first half of 2004.

"The numbers on the neighbor islands were pretty sizable, as you can imagine, in order to offset a decrease in Honolulu," Perrone said.

Crime Prevention and Justice Assistance Division

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