Reported crimes in Jefferson County decline in December


Reported crime in the unincorporated areas of Jefferson County declined significantly in December compared with a year earlier, according to the monthly report from the sheriff’s office.

Last month, there were 93 crimes reported, compared with 140 in December 2012 — a decrease of 47, or a decline of more than 33 percent.

The totals do not include any reported crimes in the cities of Pine Bluff, Redfield or White Hall. Those are tallied separately by law enforcement agencies in those cities.

Burglaries and/or breaking or entering reports topped the list of crimes that went down last month compared with a year earlier, dropping from 31 in December 2012 to five last month. Decreases also were reported in counterfeiting, forgery and credit card fraud. There were no reports filed in those categories last month.

There were seven motor vehicle thefts reported last month, three more than in December 2012, while thefts of motor vehicle parts or accessories and thefts from vehicles both showed slight increases last month compared with 2012 numbers.

Aggravated assaults increased from one in December 2012 to four last month, and simple assaults showed an increase of one, going from 10 in December 2012 to 11 last month.

There were three homicides reported last year, two of those classified as first-degree murders, the third as capital murder. In 2012, two homicides were reported, one of those classified as first-degree murder, the second as manslaughter.

Looking at traffic offenses that are not reported to the FBI as criminal offenses, the sheriff’s department reported three arrests for DWI last month, one fewer than in December 2012. One citation was issued for driving left of center, two for running a stop sign, and one for failure to provide proof of insurance.

In another category not required to be reported to the FBI, misdemeanor third-degree domestic battery reports doubled in December 2013 compared with December 2012, going from five to 10.

There were two reports of harassing communications and six of terroristic threatening last month, with those numbers being slightly lower than for December 2012.