04/04/2011 10:32 am ET Updated Jun 04, 2011

New York City Rapes Increase, Murders Drop In 2011

The NYPD touted a dramatically lower homicide rate and reduction in the overall crime rate, while warning that a spike in rapes this year could only be the tip of the iceberg.

From the Daily News:

After years of significant drops, rape complaints are up dramatically - but Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly still thinks the crime is being underreported.

The NYPD logged 340 rape complaints in the first three months of this year, compared to 274 during the same period in 2010, a 24% jump.

"Any increase is regrettable," said NYPD spokesman Paul Browne, "but the fact that in 87 percent of reported rapes, the assailant was an acquaintance or relative of the victim indicates a willingness of victims to come forward, even when they know their assailant."

The numbers don't necessarily mean that more rapes have occurred, according to Harriet Lessel, executive director of the NYC Alliance Against Sexual Assault.

"Are more people reporting, or have the police been working on reporting to make sure victims are classified correctly?" she asked.

Overall, the crime rate in New York City is down 3.5 percent from the first quarter of 2010.

From the Daily News:

Homicides and shootings have dropped dramatically in the first three months of the year, NYPD statistics show.

Eighty eight people were murdered in the city in the first three months of this year, a drop of nearly 21% over the same time period in 2010.

"The NYPD focuses its attention and resources relentlessly on shootings and homicide in general," Browne said. "Hopefully, what now appears to be a record-setting trend for murder decline will continue into the next quarter."

The 47th Precinct in the northeast Bronx had the most murders with five. East New York's 75th Precinct was the most violent, logging 682 felony complaints.

The statistics come two weeks after the NYPD announced that the number of uniformed officers will plummet because of budget cuts.