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Tuesday - May 25, 2004


RALEIGH - United States Attorney Frank D. Whitney said, "Throughout the nation and Raleigh, violent crime and murder rates are down. Through a cohesive teaming of federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies under the Project Safe Neighborhoods program, we are targeting repeat offenders who have chosen to live a life of crime. It is not a coincidence that, as we lock up multiple-felon repeat offenders, violent crime is dropping." He added, "Last week's Wake County Warrant Enforcement initiative was a prime example of the coordination of state, local, and federal agencies working together to make the city of Raleigh and Wake County a safer place." During last week's round-up, 90 violent offenders were arrested.

According to data released on Monday, May 24, 2004, in the FBI's Preliminary Annual Uniform Crime Report, the murder rate fell 26.7%, forcible rape dropped 23.6%, and burglary fell 13.3% in Raleigh during 2003.

The nation's violent crime declined 3.2% in 2003. The preliminary annual report is based upon information from law enforcement agencies that provide information to the FBI's Uniform Crime Report (UCR) Program. In order to gauge the level and types of violent acts occurring across the nation, the UCR Program tracks the offenses of murder and non-negligent manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault. Collectively, these offenses form the violent crime category.

From Fiscal Year 2001 to Fiscal Year 2003 and with the implementation of "Project Safe Neighborhoods" (PSN), prosecutions for federal gun and violent crimes have increased by 259 percent, and convictions for those offenses have increased by 236 percent. During FY 2003, the District had a 99.6 percent conviction rate for gun and violent crimes with an average prison sentence of 98 months (just over eight years).

The United States Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of North Carolina, working with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the United States Marshals Service, and other federal and state agencies, has committed itself to aggressively pursuing the goals of Project Safe Neighborhoods. Since 2001, 824 defendants have been or are currently being prosecuted by the U. S. Attorney's Office. U. S. Attorney Whitney stated, "For each repeat offender prosecuted and removed from the street, that is a violent crime or murder prevented. There are people alive today who would have been victims of murder if these gun offenders had been allowed to stay on the street."


News releases are available on the U. S. Attorney's web page at within 48 hours of release.

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