The first annual California Crime Report, released June 30, is part of the state’s annual statistical reporting of Homicide in California, Crime in California, Use of Force Incident Reporting, and Juvenile Justice in California.
“Access to quality data is a cornerstone of responsible public policy. The data released today are critical to understanding, preventing, and combating crime,” said State Attorney General Rob Ponta. “In 2022, California has made significant progress toward lowering its homicide rates, but there is still much more to do.” that needs to be done.”
Here’s a quick snapshot of gun crime in Tulare County and across the state.
Gun crime in Tulare County
The report defines a “crime weapon,” as a firearm recovered by a law enforcement agency after it was used in a crime, suspected of being used in a crime, or illegally possessed. The Department of Justice has reviewed all crime weapon data submitted to the agency between January 1, 2010, and December 31, 2022.
Tulare County law enforcement seized 8,030 crime guns during that time period. According to the report, there were 170.49 gun crimes per 10,000 people. The county’s population in 2021 was 470,999, according to the American Community Survey.
By comparison, Los Angeles County, the most populous in the state, reported the highest number of firearms at 140,799. There was 140 gun crime for every 10,000 people in Los Angeles County.
Some of the major domestic hits for crime guns include:
Over the past decade, California has seen a rise in the number of untraceable guns used to commit crimes. In 2022, there was a 7% decrease in crimes committed with weapons without serial numbers, the first decrease recorded since 2013.
A firearm may not have a serial number for several reasons, including being an older firearm, being a homemade (“ghost gun”) firearm, or having the serial number illegally removed by grinding.
The cities with the highest crimes committed while using untraceable guns were Los Angeles with 4,968 or 12.44%, San Diego with 1,132, or 3.91%, San Francisco with 1,132, or 2.83%, and Sacramento with 1,088 or 2.72%.
In Tulare County, law enforcement officers seized 367 untraceable guns used to commit crimes. There were approximately eight guns without serial numbers used in crimes for every 10,000 people.
A statewide look at crime
Ponta said that while crime rates remain below historic highs, property crime and violence continue to plague communities, and gun violence remains a “major threat to public safety.”
The state’s gun fatality rate is lower than the national average, but gun violence accounted for nearly three-quarters of all homicides in California in 2022.
“This is unacceptable,” Ponta said.
A murder in 2022:
The homicide rate, defined as the number of homicides per 100,000 people in the state, fell 5% in 2022 (from 6 per 100,000 in 2021 to 5.7 per 100,000 in 2022), well below California’s historic high of 12.9 per 100,000 in 1993.
The number of homicides in 2022 is roughly half the number of homicides in 1993, despite the population increasing from 31 million in 1993 to more than 39 million in 2022.
Firearms are still the most common weapon involved in homicides. In 2022, 73.6% of homicides, where a gun was identified, were with a firearm.
Of California’s 36 counties with populations of 100,000 or more, Merced County reports the highest homicide rate (12.3 per 100,000) and Santa Cruz County, the lowest (0.8 per 100,000).
Among homicides in which the victim’s relationship to the suspect was identified, women (37.1%) were more likely than men (7.7%) to be killed by a spouse, parent, or child.
There was a 4.2% drop in total arrests for homicides from 1,550 in 2021 to 1,485 in 2022.
Crimes in 2022:
The violent crime rate — the number of violent crimes per 100,000 people — increased 6.1% from 466.2 in 2021 to 494.6 in 2022, lower than California’s historic high of 1,103.9 in 1992.
The property crime rate increased 6.2% from 2,178.4 in 2021 to 2,313.6 in 2022, down from California’s historic high of 6,880.6 in 1980.
The overall arrest rate decreased by 2.7% from 2,606.3 in 2021 to 2,535.2 in 2022, continuing the steady year-to-year downward trend that began in 2004 when the total arrest rate was 5,385.5.
In 2022, the total number of adults under active surveillance will reach its lowest level since 1980 at 151,402.
The total number of full-time criminal justice personnel — including law enforcement, prosecutors, investigators, public defenders and probation officers — decreased by 1.4%.
This article originally appeared on the Visalia Times-Delta: California releases annual crime rates; ‘More still needs to be done’