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December 19, 2011 (WASHINGTON) — The FBI said Monday there were fewer violent crimes committed in the first half of this year despite high unemployment and a lackluster economy. Police departments across the country reported an overall drop of nearly 6.5 percent in violent crime. That includes murder, rape, robbery and aggravated assault. Better policing and an aging population may help explain it, but Jeffrey Butts at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York says the biggest reason may be changing mores. “It’s just not as accepted anymore to engage in violence to commit crime, to harm someone, to steal.” The decline was biggest in small to midsized cities in the Midwest.

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