The latest crime statistics report shows crime up 7.9% in North Dakota in 2012, compared with 2011.
"I have to say the report is not a rosy one for crime in North Dakota," Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem told Bismnarck reporters. He says part of that is attributable to the increase in the state’s population. He does say one area of concern is the amount of organized drug trafficking the state is seeing – which he says is a statewide problem.
"It wouldn't be accurate to say that all the drug activity is out in western North Dakota," said Stenehjem. "It's very often organized on a statewide basis. But the reality is there are a lot of people in western North Dakota who have a lot of money."
Stenehjem says an increased law enforcement presence is helping – but he says the drug problem is becoming so common that law enforcement is being “reactive,” and not “pro-active.”
Stenehjem says the state's crime rate -- 2124.8 per 100,000 population -- is still one of the lowest in the nation. Violent crimes increased by 7.2%, aggravated assaults increased by 3%. The state reported 20 murders in 2012, up from 15 in 2011. But Stenehjem says that number can fluctuate greatly from year to year, and the average is 11 to 12 murders per year.
You can read the full 2012 report here:
Charts are available here: http://www.ag.state.nd.us/documents/07-30-13CrimeReport-Charts.pdf