NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - According to the NOPD's annual Uniform Crime Report (UCR), the number of murders in New Orleans reached a 43-year low in 2014.
At 150 – what the department said is the lowest number of murders since 1971 – the downward trend represents the third consecutive year that murders have declined in the city, with 39.6 victims per 100,000 people.
NOPD Superintendent Michael Harrison attributes the drop to the recent indictments of gang members and the NOLA for Life mentoring program that targets at-risk young men.
Mitigating the positive trend was an increase in other crime. Overall, crimes against persons increased by 27.15 percent and crimes against property increased by 12.78 percent. Harrison said the creation and supplementation of a Violent Crimes Task Force was meant to address the rise. Comprised of 16 officers, the task force focuses on crime hot spots across the city each night. He said the proactive patrols provide visibility to help prevent crimes and allow officers to respond more quickly.
To increase manpower, the department is continuing its recruitment efforts, shifting officers from administrative duties to street patrols and enhancing the NOPD Reserve Unit.