Police say Community Programs like "Not My Son" are working to lower crime rates

Violent Crime dropping in St. Pete
Posted at 4:09 PM, May 25, 2018

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Violent crime is down in St. Pete and police officers say they have the community to thank. Over the past 5 years, the violent crime rate in St Pete is down 24% over the past 5 years. This includes homicide, rape, robbery and aggravated assault. 

Crime numbers typically trend up in the summer months when teenagers are out of school. St. Petersburg is working hard to keep crime off the streets. They're putting school resource officers into community roles and having them check in on teens throughout the summer months. 

One successful initiative is Not My Son, which kicks off its 3rd annual safe summer campaign Friday night. The grassroots community outreach campaign and intervention effort was established after a string of violent homicides in the city, killing several teenage boys.

The program targets kids between 12-24 years old. It promotes positive achievement and anti-crime awareness. Each Friday during the summer break the group canvasses the streets with a simple goal  — build relationships and encourage others.

St. Pete Police officers credit the program, and others like it, for reducing crime in the city. 

Over the past 5 years, homicide rates are down 33%, robbery rates are down 32%, aggravated assault is down 25%, burglary is down 42%, larceny is down 28%, auto theft is down 38%.

Overall, crimes across the board are down 30%. The only category which saw an increase over the past 5 years is forciable sex (rape and attempted rape) which increased 10% according to numbers provided by the St. Petersburg Police Department.