The FBI index crime rate in Spring Valley rose in the first half of 2012 compared to the first six months of 2011, following a countywide trend, the San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG) announced last week.
Spring Valley's 2012 mid-year crime rate stands well below the average for the county, with 17.55 crimes reported out of every 1,000 residents in the unincorporated area; an 8 percent rise from the 2011 mid-year rate, but down 34 percent compared to 2008.
In fact, of the 25 cities and unincorporated areas reported around the county, Spring Valley showed the fifth lowest crime rate for mid-year 2012.
However, the violent crime rate in Spring Valley jumped 12 percent compared to the 2011 mid-year numbers. The 160 violent crimes reported is also 2 percent higher since 2008.
This rise is indicative in a rise of incidents from 2011-12 in each of these categories: homicide (from 1 to 2), rape (from 5 to 12), robbery (from 30 to 35) and aggravated assault (from 106 to 111).
As for Spring Valley's property crime rate, it's up 7 percent from last year's mid-year rate, but down 41 percent compared to 2008. The rate of 13.14, Spring Valey has the third lowest property crime rate in the county, and sits well above the county average of 21.38. Only 4S Ranch and Poway have lower property crime rates.
Regionally, the average mid-year violent crime rate rose 8 percent, while the property rate climbed 7 percent in the year-over-year comparison, according to the SANDAG. Though higher than last year's mid-year crimes rates, this year's tallies are lower countywide than any year between 2003 and 2010.
It's too early to tell if this year's uptick is temporary or if it's the beginning of a trend, according to Cynthia Burke, director of criminal justice research for SANDAG.
"We have enjoyed historic lows in crime rates over the past decade, so it's not entirely surprising that the numbers are now going up," Burke said in a statement.
According to SANDAG, a total of 5,808 violent crimes were reported to law enforcement in the county between January and June, 90 in La Mesa.
The agency said that of the 33,599 property crimes reported countywide in the first half of this year, 476 in were in Spring Valley.
-City News Service contributed to this report