Violent U.S. crime drops again, reaches 1970s level: FBI

All types of violent crimes were lower, with murder and non-negligent manslaughter off 4.4 percent to 14,196, the lowest figure since 1968. Rape was down 6.3 percent and robbery fell 2.8 percent, the Federal Bureau of Investigation data showed.

James Alan Fox, a criminologist at Northeastern University in Boston, said there was a variety of factors behind the decline in violent crime in recent decades, including the United States having the highest rate of imprisonment in the world.

He said an aging population and improved police tactics also played a role, along with the increased use of security cameras and the pervasive use of phones to take videos.

“It’s hard for criminals to do anything without being caught on video,” Fox said.