Despite the continued standoff in Congress regarding gun control, the fact remains that violent  crimes in America are on the rise. The FBI recently released their early crime statistics report for the months of January 2012 through June 2012. The report contains information from more than 13,300 law enforcement agencies across the country. According to statistics from the Preliminary Semiannual Uniform Crime Report, the number of violent crimes reported by law enforcement increased 1.9 percent when compared with figures from the same period in 2011. The number of property crimes increased 1.5 percent overall.

Violent crime increased in each of the nation’s four regions. The largest increase, 3.1 percent, was in the West, followed by 2.5 percent in the Midwest, 1.1 percent in the South, and 1.1 percent in the Northeast. All three categories of property crime–burglary, larceny-theft, and motor vehicle theft– showed increases in the number of offenses from January to June 2012 when compared with data from the same period in 2011. There was a 1.9 percent overall increase in larceny-theft, 1.7 percent increase in the number of motor vehicle thefts and a 0.1 percent increase in burglary offenses. The only violent crime offense category that showed increases in all four regions of the country was aggravated assault, which was up 4.4. percent in the Midwest, 2.4 percent in the West, 1.7 percent in the South, and 0.8 percent in the Northeast.

The preliminary crime statistics for the full year of 2012 should be available in six months. The final figures are scheduled to be released by the end of the year 2013. You can read the rest of the report here.

Aaron Watson is an associate attorney at Levin Papantonio. Mr. Watson has served as president for the Black Law Students Association at Stetson, interned with the United States Department of Justice, and volunteered with the Florida Attorney General’s office. He was selected for the Stallworth Trial Team Award by faculty, named to Who’s Who Among American Universities & Colleges, and was inducted into The National Order of Barristers. Mr. Watson currently serves on the Board of Governors for the American Association for Justice. He also serves on the board of directors for the Florida Justice Association.