Crime in Hawaii 2000 (Annual)

Crime in Hawaii rose 7.5% in 2000 to reach second lowest point on record; motor vehicle thefts increase sharply, juvenile arrests at record low level

December 12, 2001 – Attorney General Earl Anzai’s annual Uniform Crime Report, Crime in Hawaii, shows that the state’s Index Crime rate for 2000 increased 7.5% from the record low rate set in 1999, marking its second lowest level since the start of statewide crime data collection in 1975. In 2000, the statewide rate for reported Index Crimes (murder, forcible rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, motor vehicle theft, and larceny-theft), was 5,199 reported offenses per 100,000 residents, for a total of 62,987 offenses. Attorney General Anzai stated that, “While any increase in crime is undoubtedly a cause for concern, it’s critical to note that were it not for the exceptionally low crime rates reached in 1999, 2000 would have been Hawaii’s banner year.”

Other report highlights:

Hawaii’s violent Index Crime rate increased 3.8% in 2000, with 2,954 such offenses reported during the year. The two most serious violent crimes, murder and forcible rape, decreased 21.6% and 4.3% in rate, respectively. Rate increases were recorded for aggravated assault (6.2%) and robbery (5.7%). The statewide violent crime rate in 2000 was 244 reported offenses per 100,000 residents.

The property Index Crime rate increased 7.7% in 2000, with 60,033 total reported offenses. The motor vehicle theft rate skyrocketed 28.5%, nearly halving the relief gained during the major decline of the previous four years. After four consecutive record lows, the state’s burglary rate climbed 10.7% while the larceny-theft rate, by far the largest Index Crime category, rose 4.6%. The statewide property crime rate in 2000 was 4,955 reported offenses per 100,000 residents.

The number of statewide Index Crime arrests fell 2.7% in 2000. Arrests for violent crimes increased 11.7% and decreased 5.0% for property crimes. The overall clearance rate for reported Index Crimes dropped from 17.4% in 1999 to 14.7% in 2000.

Adult arrests comprised 69% of all Index Crime arrests in 2000; juvenile arrests accounted for 31%. A total of 2,769 juvenile Index Crime arrests were reported statewide during 2000, significantly improving on the previous record low of 2,946 set in 1999.

The City & County of Honolulu’s Index Crime rate increased 7.9% in 2000, with the violent crime rate climbing 3.5% and the property crime rate up 8.1%. Honolulu’s crime rate in 2000 was at its second lowest point in the 26-year history of statewide data collection.

Hawaii County’s Index Crime rate increased 5.8% in 2000, also reaching its second lowest point on record. The violent crime rate increased 11.7% and the property crime rate rose 6.6%. Hawaii County posted the state’s lowest violent, property, and total Index Crime rates for 2000.

The Index Crime rate in Maui County increased 3.5% in 2000, with the violent crime rate falling 4.1% and the property crime rate up 3.5%. Maui’s violent crime rate reduction was the state’s only major crime category decrease recorded for the year.

After several consecutive years posting the state’s lowest crime rates, Kauai County’s Index Crime rate rose 20.1% in 2000. While a 123.6% violent crime rate increase is at least partially attributable to a reclassification of aggravated assaults in accordance with program guidelines, Kauai County also posted a 16.9% property crime rate increase.

Thirty-five murders were reported in Hawaii in 2000, down from 44 reported in 1999. Females comprised 37.1% of the murder victims and 15.2% of the alleged offenders in 2000. The breakdown for the relationship between victims and offenders includes: acquaintance, 22.9%; stranger, 20.0%; spouse, 20.0%; unknown, 17.1%; immediate family, 14.3%; and girlfriend, 5.7%.

Of the 2,608 murders, robberies, and aggravated assaults reported statewide during 2000, 64% were committed with hands and feet, 16% with other/unknown weapons, 10% with firearms, and 10% with edged weapons.

On October 31, 2000, a total of 2,788 police officers and 747 civilians were employed by the four county police departments, denoting a 2.2% increase in officers and a 3.5% decrease in civilians from the figures reported on October 31, 1999.

In 2000, 264 assaults on Hawaii’s police officers were recorded (a rate of 9.5 attacks per 100 police officers), marking a 3.9% increase from 1999 and the second lowest total since the start of data collection in 1975. The full report also provides data on the time of day, type of assignment, and the weapons used in attacks against police officers.

Paul Perrone, the Attorney General’s Chief of Research and director of the state Uniform Crime Reporting Program remarked that, “The most interesting findings seem to be the sudden and sharp increase in motor vehicle thefts, and the record low number of juvenile arrests. From 1975 to 1997, the number of juvenile arrests for serious crimes hovered in the 4,000-6,000 range, and to see the figure approach and then fall well below the 3,000 mark over the past three years is amazing.”