The FBI released the first-round of 2017 crime data in early February and the news was good.
The Preliminary Semiannual Uniform Crime Report covers January through June of 2017 and the results are mixed. But the good news is that there was an overall decrease (down 0.8%) in violent crime for the first six months of 2017 compared to the same time period in 2016. This respite comes after two consecutive years of increases in violent crime nationwide.
Rape, robbery, and aggravated assault all decreased between 2016-2017 after increasing between both 2014-2015 and 2015-2016. Burglary, larceny/theft, and arson all continued to decrease, contributing to an overall 2.9% reduction in the number of property crimes.
The overall decrease in violent crime can likely be attributed to the renewed efforts of the federal Department of Justice. Attorney General Jeff Sessions has prioritized violent crime, including a refocused effort on prosecuting firearm offenses.
Large cities (1 million+ residents) witnessed less violent crime than in the previous year but cities with between half a million and just under a million residents saw an increase in violent crime compared to the first half of 2016. There was also an overall 1.5% increase in the number of murders nationwide.