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Virginia Beach crime rates up in 2016 so far

Now more than ever, it seems that the Virginia Beach area is seeing more crime across the board. Those who have been arrested and are facing charges may need to establish a criminal defense strategy to avoid consequences.

According to a recent report released by the police department, the early months of 2016 have shown a 2.5 percent increase in crime since 2015.

The statistics reveal that between January 1 and June 30 of this year, violent crimes have gone up over 10 percent since last year at the same time. In fact, the homicide rate appears to be the only decline. The good news is that the percentage of cleared violent crimes is up to 73.5 from 71.3. The percentage of cleared crimes refers to how many investigated crimes were solved out of the total number of reported crimes.

While the crime rate is up in Virginia Beach, the arrest rate is down 8.6 percent for adults and 10 percent for juveniles from last year. However, if you have been arrested, the penalties for a conviction can be serious depending on the severity of the charges. A violent crime, such as homicide, for example, can result in a lengthy prison sentence with no chance of parole. Less serious charges can result in probation, fines and shorter jail sentences.

It is the responsibility of the prosecutor on your case to prove that you committed the crimes you were charged with beyond a reasonable doubt. You may be able to defend against the charges by proving your innocence or proving that you did the crime, but should not be held responsible. Defending against criminal charges of any kind can feel overwhelming without the right support. An experienced legal professional may be able to assist you in establishing a successful defense and minimizing your punishment.

Source: The Virginian-Pilot, "Crime rate rises in Virginia Beach for first half of 2016," Robyn Sidersky, July 17, 2016

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