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California crime statistics show several crime trends

The California attorney general released four crime reports on July 1 in an effort to promote transparency in the state. The reports that were made public include the state's overall crime rate, hate crime rate and homicide rate. In addition, a report related to juvenile justice was also released to the public. Among the findings were a decrease in robberies and aggravated assaults between 2010 and 2015.

The number of people taken into custody dropped 4.5 percent from 2014, and the 1,158,812 people taken into custody represented the lowest number since 1969. The number of juveniles taken into custody dropped by 17 percent in 2015, and rates are at their lowest levels ever recorded. The 4.8 per 100,000 homicide rate was an increase from 4.4 per 100,000 in 2014. Furthermore, in 2015, 82.8 percent of homicide victims were male with Hispanics more likely to be victims of murder than other groups.

Hate crimes increased 10.4 percent to 837 in 2015 with 190 events being attributed to religious bias. Specifically, there were 40 hate crimes against Muslims while 97 were committed against those of the Jewish faith. Hate crimes related to an individual's sexual orientation were the second-most frequent in the state between 2006 and 2015.

Individuals who are charged with a crime may want to consult with an attorney as the possible legal, personal and professional consequences of a conviction may be severe. Legal counsel may be able to come up with a defense that may get charges reduced or thrown out completely. It may be possible to argue that an individual was compelled to take an illegal action or that the defendant didn't know that what he or she did was illegal.

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