Published in the July 31, 2015 edition

MELROSE — Chief Michael L. Lyle reported recently that the Melrose Police Department saw an almost 14 percent drop in major crimes in the first half of 2015.

Known as FBI “Part 1 Incidents,” these crimes include murder/manslaughter, rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, larceny, arson and motor vehicle theft.

The Department’s statistics are compared from the same time period — Jan. 1, 2014 through June 30, 2014 to Jan. 1, 2015 through June 30, 2015.

This year’s numbers show no reported rapes, which is down from two documented cases at the same time in 2014. Aggravated assaults decreased by over 16 percent, with 10 incidents reported this year as opposed to 12 in 2014.

As of June 30, the city had seen 21 burglaries, a more than 19 percent drop from the 26 reported at the time last year. Larcenies decreased by about 14 percent from this period in 2014, from 107 to 92. Robberies are down as well, with five on record as opposed to six last year.

“These statistics certainly show a continued dedication to community policing by the Melrose Police Department,” Chief Lyle said. “I commend our officers, who come to work every day committed to making the community a safer place to live, work and visit. I am hopeful that the numbers will continue to decrease as the year progresses.”

There was a slight increase in motor vehicle thefts, nine this year, as opposed to eight at this time last year. Arson also went up, with two reported so far this year, as opposed to zero last year.