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Number of murders in New York falls to lowest level in decades

The number of murders in New York city last year dropped to its lowest level in the modern era.

Officials said there were 290 murders in 2017, down from 335 the year before.

There were also fewer shootings and fewer overall crimes reported, while arrests were down as well.

The number of murders was the lowest since 1951, when comparable record-keeping began.

Police said the decline in crime is due in part to focusing more on larger raids and less on smaller violations, and in part to a shift in community policing.

Mayor Bill de Blasio said he is proud of the numbers.

Crime was down in most categories except for rape. There were four more rapes reported in 2017 than 2016.

The figures showed there were 789 shootings, while the number of overall crimes reported in 2017 was 96,517. Arrests were down by more than 30,000 compared with 2016.

"New York is not the violent nightmare we once read about. It's our home and we're willing to fight for it," Police Commissioner James O'Neill said.

Officials said they would spend 2018 trying to push crime down even lower.

"We can do better," said Chief Dermot Shea, head of crime control strategies.

AP

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