PORTLAND — Public safety officials say crime in Maine fell last year by 1.8 percent.

Department of Public Safety Commissioner Anne Jordan said today that robberies, burglaries and arsons went up in 2009, but every other crime category fell or was virtually unchanged.

Reports of aggravated assault fell by nearly 9 percent, car theft by 13 percent and larceny by almost 3 percent.

There were 26 homicides during the year, down from 31 in 2008.

Crime statistics are tabulated every year based on reports from local, county and state law enforcement agencies.

The department says the crime rate in Maine is about 25.3 offenses per 1,000 people, compared to the national rate of 45.4 offenses per 1,000 people.

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