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LONG BEACH (CBSLA.com) — The violent crime rate in Long Beach has dropped to a historic low, officials announced this weekend.

Final crime statistics released by the Long Beach Police Department shows that violent crime in 2012 was at its lowest since 1972 with the overall decrease by more than 5-percent.

“I’m very proud of the Long Beach Police Department and our entire public safety continuum for achieving yet another reduction in violent crime, especially in an era of fewer financial resources,” said Long Beach Mayor Bob Foster in a department statement.

According to KNX 1070’s Chris Sedens, murder was the only violent crime to increase. That rate, however, was still close to 15 percent below the five-year average.

Conversely, the statistics showed that property crime has increased 10 percent due in large part to increased residential and garage burglaries and vehicle theft.

“Last year we as a department focused on violent crime, and our 40-year low is something for the city to really be proud of,” said Long Beach Police Chief Jim McDonnell.

“As to property crime, we really need the community to step up and eliminate simple opportunities for property to be stolen. The department will always do what it can with the resources we are given, but we’re always better when we have the focus and support of the community,” McDonnell added.

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