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Queens Rape Cases Were Up in 2016, While Overall Crime Was Down, DA Says

 Queens District Attorney Richard Brown at his Kew Gardens office.
Queens District Attorney Richard Brown at his Kew Gardens office.
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DNAinfo/Shayna Jacobs

QUEENS — There was a spike in rapes in the borough in 2016, while overall major crime was down, including the number of murders which was the lowest in more than 50 years, according to the Queens District Attorney's Office.

The number of rape cases in Queens grew by 6 percent, from 292 in 2015 to 310 in 2016, according to DA Richard Brown's office. Meanwhile murders were at an historic low, down 19 percent, with 47 murders in the borough during 2016 compared to 58 in 2015.

The number of murders was the lowest since 1961, when there were only 33 murders, the DA's office said.

Major crime in general was down 3.26 percent in 2016, with car thefts dropping nearly 15 percent, robberies down 8.5 percent, burglaries 8 percent and felony assaults seeing an almost 2 percent decrease, according to the DA.

Grand larcenies were up nearly 3 percent, with 240 more last year than the year prior, the end-of-year statistics show.

Citywide crime is at an "historic" low, Mayor Bill de Blasio and NYPD Commissioner James O'Neill announced on Wednesday.

There were 101,606 crimes reported across the five boroughs in 2016, down 4 percent from the year before and the fewest ever during the NYPD's modern CompStat era, officials said.

Last year also marked the seventh consecutive term for Brown, who has been the Queens district attorney for 25 years. His office handled more than 77,000 arrest cases in 2016, he said.

"We continue to be, I believe, among the best and busiest prosecutor's offices in the country," Brown said in a statement Tuesday. "We continue to have the respect of our law enforcement colleagues and the confidence of the people of Queens County."

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