NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — While reports of burglaries in Nashville and Davidson County have been declining, preliminary data shows all other property crimes are on the rise, with a more than 50% increase in auto theft.
Auto theft continues to be the fastest-rising crime in the area. So far this year, over 3,000 cars have been reported stolen. Meanwhile, some violent offenses like homicide have dropped about 6.9% compared to the same time last year, with 81 homicides reported by the end of September.
That’s according to unofficial reports in the Metro Nashville Police Department’s weekly crime initiative book. The weekly report prepared by the MNPD Crime Analysis Section provides data on all part one offenses, including homicide, rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, larceny, motor vehicle theft and arson.
According to the MNPD, “these serious crimes” are the focus of police activity. Arson offenses in Davidson County are not included in public MNPD Uniform Crime Reports (UCR) because those offenses are investigated by the Nashville Fire Department.
Although the data is reviewed by the MNPD for accuracy and completeness, it does not reflect official counts. Below is a breakdown of the crimes that have been reported in Nashville and Davidson County so far this year.
Violent crime is composed of four offenses: homicide, rape, aggravated assault, and robbery. According to the Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program, violent crimes are those offenses which involve force or threat of force.
According to unofficial reports, the violent crime rate in Nashville and Davidson County has stayed about the same when compared to the same time last year. The data reflects only a slight decline at about 0.8%, with a total of 6,774 violent crimes reported by Sept. 30, 2023.
The largest drop in violent crime has been in the MNPD’s Hermitage precinct, where preliminary reports reflect a 14.4% decrease. The police department’s South precinct has seen the largest increase in violent offenses, with a 12.3% jump from last year.
Last month, the Madison precinct had the highest percentage increase in violent crime. However, violent offenses in the area have dropped slightly within the last 30 days. Still, the Madison, South and West precincts are the primary areas that have continued to see a rise in violent crime when compared to the same period last year.
Unofficial reports show there have been 81 homicides reported in Nashville and Davidson County as of Sept. 30, 2023 — five more than were reported at the beginning of the month. However, that is a 6.9% decrease from the 87 homicides reported by Sept. 30, 2022.
While homicides have decreased in the South, Hermitage and Madison precincts, reports have either increased or leveled out in all others. The Midtown Hills precinct has seen the largest rise in homicides, with a 160% increase compared to the same period last year.
According to preliminary reports, 13 homicides were reported in the precinct by Sept. 30, 2023, and five were reported by Sept. 30, 2022. Part of that rise can be attributed to a deadly mass shooting at The Covenant School in March.
No new homicides have been reported in the Midtown Hills precinct for a couple of months.
Officers in all eight police precincts included in the report have responded to at least four homicides this year, with five of those precincts reporting 13 total homicides. Compared to 2022, there were more homicides reported in January this year.
The homicide rate was higher this year, until it began leveling out with last year’s numbers in July. The majority of reported victims have been in the 18 to 34 age range. However, as of Sept. 30, 2023, two victims have been 65 years or older and five have been 12 years or younger.
Overall, unofficial data shows the number of rapes reported in Nashville and Davidson County has remained about the same as the previous period last year, with 402 reports made in 2022 and 406 reports made by Sept. 30, 2023.
Reports of rape had previously been decreasing since May, when rape was up about 7.2%. The majority have been reported in the MNPD’s South precinct, where preliminary reports show there has been a 19.3% increase, with 105 rapes reported by the end of September.
There have been 5,311 incidences of aggravated assault reported in Nashville and Davidson County so far this year — an about 1.1% increase from the 5,252 aggravated assaults reported by the same time last year, according to unofficial reports.
The FBI’s UCR Program defines aggravated assault as an unlawful attack by one person upon another for the purpose of inflicting severe or aggravated bodily injury. The majority of aggravated assaults have also been reported in the MNPD’s South precinct.
The total number of robberies reported in Nashville and Davidson County has dropped about 10.5% so far this year, according to preliminary reports. Overall, there have been 976 reports made, which is 114 less than the same period last year.
Nearly every police precinct has seen a decrease in robberies, with the exception of the South precinct where unofficial reports show there has been an 5.1% increase. The largest decrease has been in the West precinct, where robberies have dropped 30.2%.
Property crime includes the offenses of burglary, larceny, auto theft and arson. According to the UCR Program, the object of theft-type offenses is the taking of money or property, but there is no force or threat of force against the victims.
So far this year, unofficial reports show property crime in Nashville and Davidson County has increased by about 10.8%. In total, 22,887 incidents have been reported compared to the 20,649 incidents reported by the same time last year.
The majority of property offenses have been reported in the police department’s South precinct, where property crime has risen by about 36.6% since the same period last year. The Central and West precincts are the only areas that have seen decreases in property crime.
Burglary remains the offense with the largest decline in Nashville and Davidson County, with every single police precinct reporting a decrease compared to the same time last year. Overall, preliminary reports show incidences of burglary have dropped nearly 21.1%.
Burglary involves the unlawful entry of a home or business. In the Metro area, the largest decline has been in commercial burglary. According to unofficial reports, 1,093 commercial burglaries were reported by Sept. 30, 2022, compared to just 807 so far this year.
Residential burglary has also dropped 17.8%. The West precinct has seen the sharpest decline in burglaries, with 281 incidents reported by this time last year and only 157 reports made by Sept. 30, 2023. That represents a 44.1% decrease.
While burglary reports in Nashville and Davidson County have sharply declined, preliminary reports reflect an about 10% increase in larceny. Examples of larceny are thefts of bicycles, motor vehicle parts and accessories, shoplifting or pocket-picking.
The police department’s South precinct has seen the most considerable rise in larceny, with an about 29.1% increase and a total of 3,103 incidents reported so far this year. However, incidences of larceny have decreased 4.7% in the Central precinct.
Auto theft has been one of the fastest-rising crimes in Nashville and Davidson County, according to unofficial reports. In total, 3,741 auto thefts have been reported so far this year. That’s 1,090 more reports since July and a 51.7% increase from the 2,466 thefts reported by Sept. 30, 2022.
The South precinct has been hit the hardest, with a 107.7% increase in auto thefts and 1,111 incidents reported compared to just 535 last year. Only one police precinct, the West precinct, has seen a decrease in auto thefts, with two less thefts reported than last year.