Arrests down in Union County in 2020
Earlier this week, the State Law Enforcement Division (SLED) put out its annual crime report. The report is 167 pages long and covers the year 2020. The state saw increases in cases of murder, aggravated assault, and arson in 2020 over 2019, and decreases in the past year in sexual battery, robbery, larceny, breaking and entering, and motor vehicle thefts. While the state’s violent crime rate increased by 6% from 2019-2020, over the past 10 years, the violent crime rate is down 10.8%. Since 2001, it is down 30.1%, and since 1991, it is down 45.3%.
For Union County, 3 murders were reported in 2020, with none of them cleared. The murder rate ranks 23rd out of 46 counties. There were 6 sexual battery cases reported in 2020, with a 16.7% clearance rate. The county’s sexual battery rate is 7th-lowest in the state and the 13th-lowest clearance rate. 8 robbery cases were reported, the 20th-lowest rate in the state. The 25% clearance rate ranks #32 out of 46 counties. There were 86 cases of aggravated assault reported last year, the 14th-lowest rate in the state. With a 37.2% clearance rate, ranking 34th of 46 counties. There were 102 cases of breaking and entering the county, the 14th-lowest rate in the state. The county’s 5.9% clearance rate is 3rd-lowest in the state. 47 motor vehicle thefts were reported, the 11th-lowest rate in the state. 21.3% of the cases have been cleared, ranking 19th out of 46 counties. 536 cases of larceny were reported, with a clearance rate of 21.6%. The larceny rate ranks #21 out of 46 counties, and the clearance rate is tied for the 16th-highest in the state. There was 1 arson case reported in Union County in 2020, and it was not cleared. It is the 4th-lowest arson rate in the state.
The total number of arrests in Union County declined from 3981 in 2019 to 3201 in 2020, a 19.6% decrease. Notably, there were 60 arrests in 2019 for burglary and breaking and entering, but only 4 in 2020. DUI arrests went from 66 in 2019 to 26 in 2020. Drug law violation arrests were down 32%. Destruction/damage/vandalism of property arrests were down 47.7%. Larceny theft arrests were down 33.7%.
Union Public Safety reported 2 murders, up from 1 in 2019. They had 68 aggravated assault cases, up from 59 the previous year. They did not have any arson reports, down from 1 in 2019. They had 59 cases of breaking and entering, down from 86; 5 robbery cases, down from 10; 31 motor vehicle theft cases, up from 26; 363 larceny cases, down from 439; and 4 cases of sexual battery in 2020, down from 8 in 2019.
Jonesville Police Department reported 6 aggravated assault cases, up from 2 in 2019. They had 4 breaking and entering cases, down from 6. They had 3 motor vehicle theft reports, up from 2, and 6 larceny reports, down from 11.
The Union County Sheriff’s Office reported 1 murder in 2020, with none in 2019. There were 12 aggravated assault cases, down from 43 in 2019. There was 1 arson case, down from 4. There were 39 breaking and entering cases, down from 88. They had 3 reports of robbery, up from 2. The sheriff’s office had 13 reports of motor vehicle theft, down from 35. They had 166 larceny reports, down from 272, and two reports of sexual battery, down from 7.
The SC Forestry Commission had a single report of larceny in 2020.