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Crime continues to be significantly lower in 2008 compared to 2007, but some property crimes - like burglaries, bike theft and theft from buildings - have all increased from last year.

Violent crimes, such as robberies and assaults, are down 37 percent for the year, according to the Division of Public Safety.

The change for the month of October is a bit less drastic, with eight violent offenses reported this year, down from 10 in the same month in 2007.

The overall crime rate in the Penn patrol zone dropped 6 percent compared to 2007 through the end of October, with 772 incidents reported in 2008, down from 823 in 2007. Total crime was down 30 percent for October compared with the same month last year.

DPS spokeswoman Stefanie Cella said increased use of Penn's walking-escort service could push crime rates even lower.

"We'd love to see more people using walking escorts," she said. "Women use it more than men, but it would be great if everyone used it."

Burglaries on campus have increased 79 percent for the year to date - there have been 70 burglaries reported so far this year, up from 39 in 2007.

But far fewer incidents were reported in October compared with September. Last month, six burglaries were reported - half as many as in September, when a large number of burglaries occurred at fraternity houses.

Cella attributed the decrease from September to the possibility of increased awareness among students.

"Maybe people are finally getting the message," Cella said. "It seems people are starting to lock their doors and windows."

She noted that DPS has met with the Undergraduate Assembly to increase peer-to-peer discussion about safety awareness.

Another area of crime that continues to be high is bike theft, which rose 30 percent this year.

DPS continues to stress the importance of using kryptonite U-locks rather than cable locks to secure bicycles.

A summary of crime statistics for the year to date:

Two homicides were reported both this year and last year.

Total robberies decreased from 62 last year to 37 this year.

Aggravated assaults decreased from 14 in 2007 to eight in 2008.

Simple assaults dropped from 30 last year to 22 this year.

Forcible sex offenses decreased from 14 last year to seven this year.

Burglaries rose from 39 last year to 70 this year.

No arsons were reported this year, as opposed to one in 2007.

Auto thefts dropped from nine in 2007 to seven in 2008.

Theft from cars decreased from 117 last year to 94 this year.

Bike theft increased from 82 last year to 107 this year.

Theft from buildings increased from 173 in 2007 to 211 in 2008.

Retail theft decreased from 102 last year to 92 in 2008.

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