MIAMI  (CBSMiami) – The crime rate in Florida is the lowest in 40 years, according to new statistics for 2010 released Tuesday by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE). Rates were also down in South Florida.

FDLE Commissioner Gerald Bailey said overall crime in 2010 dropped by 6.7 percent over 2009. Violent crime, like murder, rape, and assault was down by just over 10 percent overall, while non-violent crime overall was down by 6 percent.

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According to the statistics, compiled by taking data submitted by 410 state law enforcement agencies and using it to create the annual Uniform Crime Report, murders in Florida dropped by just under 3 percent, while forcible sex crimes like rape declined by 3.3 percent. The state saw a big decline in aggravated assault cases, which dropped by almost 9 percent.

Despite Florida’s severe economic crisis, which saw double digit unemployment in much of the state, crimes related to money also declined significantly statewide and in most of South Florida. Burglaries were down 7 percent and car thefts dropped by more than 17 percent.

Even domestic violence reports were off by 2.7 percent statewide.

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In South Florida, the overall crime rate dropped as well. Broward County saw a drop of 5.7 percent, with declines for all major crimes except rape. Broward also saw a significant increase in burglaries not seen in Miami-Dade or Monroe counties.

Miami-Dade county’s overall crime rate was down by 4.6 percent, but the county saw an increase in reported murders. Monroe County’s rate dropped by 7.4 percent, better than the state average, but the county saw a 100% increase in murders: from 3 in 2009 to 6 in 2020.

In comparison, Broward County reported 63 murders in 2010. Miami-Dade saw 224 murders, almost 4 times the number reported in Broward.

“I applaud the work of our chiefs, sheriffs and state law enforcement; our partnerships have been instrumental in bringing the crime rate to record lows,” said Commissioner Bailey.

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“With six law enforcement officers killed in action during the past four months, the news of these drops in Florida’s crime rate reminds us that public safety comes from the commitment of selfless public servants,” said Florida Governor Rick Scott. “In acknowledging these statistics, I want to commend the men and women of law enforcement for their valor and dedication.”