Crime stats for 2018 show uptick in Alachua County, Gainesville

ALACHUA COUNTY, Fla. (WCJB) -- With the release of the 2018 Uniform Crime Report by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, statistics on crime rates for 2018 throughout the state are being analyzed.

The number of murders in the county rose from nine in 2017 to 14 in 2018, the number of reported rapes jumped from 249 to 285, the number of robberies rose from 290 to 337, assaults were up from 1,097 to 1,175 and burglary offenses increased from 1,120 to 1,144.

As the population of Alachua County increases, both Alachua County Sheriff's Office and Gainesville Police Department are looking to hire. GPD is short dozens of sworn officers, while ASO is looking to hire call center staffers.

"We still remain with the same staffing levels that we had in 2015, 2016. So we are seeing more of the crimes with the same amount of people," said Art Forgey of ASO.

Alachua County's population has grown by around 3,000 people per year going back to 2015.

Countywide in 2018 there were 12 murder arrests, 93 rape arrests, 133 robbery arrests, 547 aggravated assault arrests and 354 burglary arrests.

Forgey said the high number of reported rapes both in the city and county can be attributed to higher levels of reporting as agencies increase outreach and advocacy for rape victims.

The full Uniform Crime Report with statistics on crime data for all counties in the state can be found attached to this article.