MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The number of human trafficking cases in Minnesota nearly doubled in 2016 while the number of murders dropped after a five-year high, according to newly released crime statistics from the state’s Bureau of Criminal Apprehension.
The report, released Thursday, marks the number of cases of commercial human trafficking at 235 last year, compared to 119 in 2015 — an increase of 97 percent.
The BCA — which compiles the crime statistics every year as part of state and federal reporting requirements — says the human trafficking cases include those where law enforcement orchestrated a sting operation online targeting potential johns. That means many of those cases did not involve actual victims, though the BCA wouldn’t say how many did.
Murders, meanwhile, dropped to 100 cases in 2016 compared to 130 in 2015. That year showed the highest number between 2016 and 2012. Still, the statistics showed a 23 percent drop in murder cases in Minnesota in 2016.
Overall, violent crime jumped 0.9 percent last year compared to 2016, according to the BCA’s statistics. You can read the full report on the BCA’s website.