Overall crime down, murder up by 30 percent in New Orleans
NEW ORLEANS - New police department figures show that overall crime dropped more than 8 percent in New Orleans in the first half of the year when compared to the same period in 2014 - but, the numbers of murders and rapes were up sharply.
Figures released Friday show there were 92 murders in New Orleans from January through June. That is a 30 percent increase over the 71 murders in the first half of 2014.
Rape increased from 98 to 152, a spike of more than 55 percent. Police chief Michael Harrison says more rape victims are coming forward to report the crime after an overhaul of the police sex crimes unit. The changes came after a city inspector general's report that was highly critical of the unit.