Vermont crime rate rises

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Vermont‘s crime rate rose 5 percent last year, following several years of steady declines.

Kerry Sleeper, the state’s commissioner of public safety, says the increase in robberies and violent crime appears to by driven by drugs.

Vermont‘s violent crime rate rose by 12 percent in 2006, while the rate for the Northeast remained the same.  Nationally the crime rate increased by just one percent.

The number of homicide victims rose to 13 in 2006, up from eight the year before.

Chittenden County still had the highest crime rate of any county although the number had declined some from 2005. And of Vermont cities, Rutland had the highest rate.

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