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Baltimore County Crime Down

Baltimore County’s violent crime rate dropped by a little more than six percent last year, even though the population increased.

County police released crime stats Wednesday showing there were 25 murders in 2014, matching the annual average over the previous five years. But the number of rapes went down by nearly 30 percent and aggravated assaults dropped by more than 11 percent.

Police Chief Jim Johnson gave a lot of the credit to investments in DNA testing, ballistics and communications technology and to constant daily analysis from people he called keyboard crime fighters.

"These are professional staff employees in our agency that look at algorithms of crime and help us predict where crime will occur and help us put together a case," he said.

Despite the drop in other crime, robberies remained a trouble spot. They were up six percent over the previous five year average. Convenience store and gas station robberies were up dramatically in 2014. Johnson said police have arrested one person who was responsible for a number of those robberies.

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John Lee is a reporter for WYPR covering Baltimore County. @JohnWesleyLee2