11/30/2012 04:53 pm ET Updated Nov 30, 2012

Detroit 2012 Murder Rate Has Already Passed 2011 Homicide Rate

It's a grim statistic, but murder is on the rise again in the Motor City. The figures for 2012 have already outpaced those for the whole of last year.

354 homicides have taken place in Detroit this year as of Nov. 25, according the city's website.

That compares to 344 murders for the entire year of 2011 -- a number that prompted local funeral home directors to hold a hearse parade through several high-crime Detroit neighborhoods last January.

309 homicides were reported by the city of Detroit in 2010; 364 in 2009; and 327 in 2008, WXYZ reports, citing the Michigan State Police Uniform Crime Report.

Overall, crime appears to be down for this year -- though robberies have seen a bit of a spike. 4,920 robberies have occured as of Nov. 11 this year, compared to 4,774 last year, according to statistics made available on the city's website.

Budget issues have had a serious impact on Detroit's policing in the last year. In January, the Detroit Police Department implemented a program known as virtual precincts which closed precincts during late-night hours in order to put more officers on the street. Under the new system, citizens must phone in complaints at these times through a call center.

Concerns about reduced staff, a 10-percent pay cut and 12-hour shifts among police officers prompted some sworn officers to hold a "enter Detroit at your own risk" rally at a downtown baseball game back in October.

A poll released by the Detroit News that month found that 40 percent of city residents planned to leave Detroit within the next five years, and cited crime as the biggest challenge they faced in the city.



Most Dangerous Cities In America 2011