So far in 2017, Kent has had eight homicides, including two officer-involved shootings. The city had four homicides in 2014, three in 2013 and two in 2012. The number of reported rapes has remained fairly consistent over the past five years, Axelson said.
The FBI annually compiles numbers reported to its Uniform Crime Reporting Program by more than 16,000 law enforcement agencies nationwide.
Arson is the only category where the numbers decreased in Kent, with 16 cases in 2016 compared to 19 the previous year, a 15 percent drop.
Thomas expects an increase in the number of officers in Kent could help lower the crime rates.
“A small number of people commit a large number of crimes,” Thomas said about people who steal vehicles, strip them of their parts and then sell those parts.
Kent Police formed a task force to begin a vehicle theft and vehicle prowl emphasis in May 2016 that resulted in 201 arrests for possession of stolen vehicle in 2016 compared to 137 arrests in 2015, a 46 percent increase. The emphasis patrols helped the stolen vehicle numbers decrease so far this year, Axelson said.