Located on the far eastern side of the state, Douglas County lies along the Missouri River and the border with Iowa. The county covers almost 340 square miles, of which the city of Omaha takes up approximately 140 square miles. One in four Nebraska residents lives in Douglas County, with the majority of those living in Omaha. Figures from the 2010 Census tell us that just over 500,000 people call Douglas County home and most of them (over 400,000) live in the city of Omaha. Crime statistics for the county are difficult to come by, but the Omaha Police Department does compile and publish crime statistics each year. As of 2017, the most recent year for which figures are available is 2015. Crimes are divided into two categories: violent crimes and property crimes. Violent crimes include homicides, aggravated assault, robbery, and rape. Property crimes include burglary, larceny, and motor vehicle theft. Yearly statistics are also compared to prior year figures to illustrate the year-to-year increase or decrease in crimes. Statistics relating to cases cleared are also compared to national figures to illustrate where the city of Omaha stands in comparison with the national average.
Violent Crimes in Omaha
- Homicide – there were 50 homicides in 2015, an increase of 18 over the previous year or a 56 percent increase.
- Forcible rape – forcible rapes showed a slight, three percent, decrease year over year with 174 in 2015 compared to 180 the previous year.
- Robbery – there was a slightly sharper decline in robberies with 655 in 2015 compared to 723, illustrating a nine percent decrease year to year.
- Aggravated assault – aggravated assaults also declined some from the previous year with 1,452 in 2015 compared to 1.523, a five percent decrease.
- Total – when viewed collectively, there were 2,331 violent crimes in Omaha in 2015 compared to 2,458 in 2014, representing an overall decrease of five percent.
Figures relating to the number of cases cleared are definitely encouraging when compared to national averages. The Omaha Police Department cleared 70 percent of homicides compared to the national average of 64.5 percent. They also cleared 59 percent of the forcible rapes and 47 percent of robberies compared to national averages of 39.3 and 29.6 percent, respectively. Aggravated assaults cleared is the only category wherein Omaha fared worse than the national average with a cleared rate of 49 percent compared to the national average of 56.3 percent. Collectively, Omaha cleared 50 percent of all violent crimes for the year 2015 compared to the national average of 47.4 percent.
- Burglary – robberies saw a significant decrease year over year with 2,160 in 2015, down from 2,997 in 2014 and representing a 28 percent decrease.
- Larceny – also on the decline, there were 11,558 larcenies in 2015 compared to 12,910 the previous year, marking a 10 percent decrease year over year.
- Motor vehicle theft – also indicating a substantial decline, there were 2,543 motor vehicle thefts in 2015 compared to 3,146 in 2014, a 19 percent decrease.
- Total – collectively, there were 16,261 property crimes in Omaha during 2015, representing a sharp decrease of 15 percent from the previous year total of 19,053.
With regard to cases cleared, the Omaha Police Department cleared 14 percent of their burglaries, slightly more than the national average of 13.6 percent. They also cleared 29 percent of all larcenies compared to 23 percent for the national average. Finally, they fared considerably better than the national average with respect to motor vehicle thefts, clearing 25 percent compared to 12.8 percent nationally. Overall, the Omaha Police Department cleared 29 percent of all property crimes in 2015, compared to the national average of 23.6 percent.
If you have been charged with a criminal offense in Douglas County, Nebraska, it is in your best interest to consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney right away to discuss your legal rights and/or defenses. In Nebraska contact Petersen Criminal Defense Law 24 hours a day at 402-509-8070.