Myrtle Beach claims lowest crime rate in 20 years - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Myrtle Beach claims lowest crime rate in 20 years

(Source: City of Myrtle Beach Government Facebook) (Source: City of Myrtle Beach Government Facebook)

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – The City of Myrtle Beach released statistics Tuesday showing reported crime in 2014 was the lowest it has been in 20 years.

From 1995 to 2014, the data shows violent crimes and property crimes dropped more than 30 percent. From year to year though, those numbers fluctuate.

City leaders say the trend is obvious over the last two decades, and they attribute much of this reported decline to crime prevention techniques like surveillance cameras.

"We want the cameras to help catch criminals but more importantly we want it to be a deterrent," Myrtle Beach Government Spokesperson Mark Kruea said. "We want that surveillance system to let people know that doing something bad in Myrtle Beach is not a good idea because you're going to be on camera."

In May, crews started installing surveillance cameras along Ocean Boulevard and surrounding streets. They believe technology like this will help the decline in crime continue, but there is still work to do.

"We're continuing to look to grow the police department," Kruea said. "We added 20 police officers last year. We're doing community policing. We're working with the neighborhoods. I think we're reaching out to the community to say 'you be partners with us in this and these are the results we're seeing.'"

The data comes from annual reports the Myrtle Beach Police Department sends to the FBI and SLED.

Copyright 2015 WMBF News. All rights reserved.

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