BROOKLYN — Officials say 2016 was the borough's safest year ever, with the fewest number of shootings and shooting victims on record, a more than 10 percent drop in homicides and an overall decrease in major crimes.
There were 407 shootings in Brooklyn this year — 61 less than in 2015, a 13 percent drop — and 75 fewer shooting victims than the year before, the lowest numbers the borough has seen since officials began tracking them, acting Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez said Thursday.
The borough saw the fewest number of shootings and shooting victims this year, officials said. (Credit: Brooklyn DA's Office)
There were also 15 fewer murders in 2016 than 2015 — 127 compared to 142, a 10.6 percent drop — marking the second fewest homicides in a year behind the record low in 2014, when there were 122 murders, officials said.
Crime overall in the borough was also down this year, dropping 9.5 percent compared to 2015, with decreases in all seven major felonies crimes with the exception of felony assault, which went up just 1.1 percent, officials said.
Gonzalez — who took over as acting DA in October after Ken Thompson's death from cancer — attributed the crime drop to a number of initiatives from both the DA's office and the NYPD.
These include the expansion of the DA's Crime Strategies Unit, which keeps track of gang members and other known violent criminals and looks to identify "hot spots" of violence in the borough.
Other efforts include the Firearms Prosecution Unit, which was created in January to prosecute gun possession cases more quickly, and the start of the DA's Young Adult Bureau this spring, which handles the cases of young people charged with misdemeanors and offers them services like counseling and job training.
"While these year-end statistics are encouraging, more needs to be done and I remain committed to making Brooklyn an even safer and better place for all of its residents," Gonzalez said.