Saint Paul Police Department releases preliminary 2017 crime statistics

Thefts and auto thefts drive a 10 percent increase in Part I crimes


The Saint Paul Police Department today (Monday, Feb. 26) released preliminary year-end crime statistics for 2017.

Overall, Part I crime increased by 10 percent last year; crimes against persons increased by 2.3 percent while crimes against property increased by 10.9 percent. 

The data show that the overall increase was largely driven by a 16.2 percent increase in thefts and an 11.2 percent increase in auto thefts, which accounts for nearly 80 percent of the total increase to Part I crimes.

According to the data:

  • There were 22 homicides in the city in 2017, an increase of three over the previous year.
  • There were 217 rapes last year, compared to 184 in 2016.
  • There were 697 robberies in 2017, which is three fewer than the previous year.  
  • There were 1,060 aggravated assaults last year, compared to 1,067 in 2016.
  • There were 2,274 burglaries in 2017 and 2,278 in 2016.
  • There were 6,577 thefts last year and 5,659 in 2016.
  • There were 2,084 motor vehicle thefts in 2017 versus 1,874 the previous year.
  • Arsons increased from 109 in 2016 to 143 last year.

The Part I crime index remains 1.6 percent lower than it was in 2013. Over that same time period, 911 calls for service have increased by 33 percent. In addition, officers engaged in 13 percent more proactive police contacts last year than they did in 2016.

Saint Paul Police Chief Todd Axtell says that the increase in Part I crimes is something the department is working hard to address.

“We have a growing city, with a historic number of residents, many new entertainment venues and businesses,” he said. “While this is good for the city, it can also lead to an increase in crime—especially property crimes such as theft and auto theft.

“Our goals for 2018 are to continue to have a positive presence in our neighborhoods, connect with young people and help them engage in positive activities, and partner with those who live and work in this city.

“We’ve focused a great deal on community engagement, because by building connections and trust we can partner with the people we serve to intervene before crimes occur and identify those who are involved in crimes. When people trust us, they are more likely to call us when they are victims of crimes. Together, we can reduce these numbers and make sure Saint Paul is safe for everyone.”

Because the data is based on initial incident information that does not include a final assessment of victims or unfounded reports of crime, it is considered preliminary. It is possible that the final percentage could change slightly when it is submitted to the FBI for Uniform Crime Reporting purposes later this year.

Once submitted, that information, along with data for previous years can be found at