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Memphis crime stats show property crime increasing in 2017

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- The Memphis Shelby Crime Commission released new statistics that show a mixed result in efforts to decrease crime from the record-breaking 2016.

According to the statistics, gleaned from the Tennessee Bureau of Investigations, major property crime increased nearly 15 percent in the first quarter of 2017 compared with the same period in 2016.

Clarence Alexander told WREG he recently discovered a stolen car in front of his Frayser home.

The FedEx delivery driver said he saw the truck running when he got off his shift around 3 a.m. When he woke up the next day, it was still there.

"I got up about 11 o'clock that morning. The truck was still there, still running. There was no one in it so I called the police. They came out confirmed it,” he said. “It happens kind of regularly.”

Officials said more car thefts are the main reason for the uptick. Police have made 70 percent more vehicle theft arrests in 2017 than they did during the same time period the year before.

“Right now it seems like everyone is having a hard time. And some of the young people, they need jobs but they got criminal records,” Alexander said.

Statistics also show the violent crime rate, which includes murder and rape, is about the same. But it doesn't seem that way to Alexander.

“We just went through the fourth month in this year. It seems like more and more violent crime to me,” he said.

According to Alexander, police and the mayor are doing enough; it’s up to the people to make change.