Orlando police say crime is up in the city

ORLANDO, Fla. — In a report released Tuesday, the Orlando Police Department said crime increased by more than 2 percent from 2016 to 2017.

There were 21 more cases of reported sexual offenses in 2017 than the year before, but according to the report, aggravated assault and murders are down.

Last year, police responded to more than 300,000 calls for service and made more than 9,000 arrests.

In the past year, there were more sex offenses reported to police.

Bianca Sabrkhani, who works for Victim Service Center of Central Florida, said the #MeToo movement that started last year might have empowered victims to come forward.

"People feel more comfortable coming forward in our community and reporting what's happening to them," she said.

There was an 8 percent drop in violent crime.

The city had 23 murders in 2017, which is down from 84 murders during the previous year -- a figure that includes the 49 victims of the Pulse nightclub massacre.

There were almost 100 drug arrests. More than 700 pounds of illegal drugs and more than $250,000 were taken off the streets.

Orlando police Chief John Mina said good police work coupled with assistance from the community helped to lower those numbers.

Officer-involved shootings were down 50 percent from 2016.

Karen Parks

Karen Parks, WFTV.com

Karen Parks is a reporter at WFTV.