Public Safety
Drug Abuse Arrests


Drug Abuse Arrests

What does this measure?

The number of drug abuse arrests in a geographic area, presented per 1,000 residents.

Why is this important?

Drug use, sale and other illegal drug-related activity can have immediate as well as long-term negative health, social and economic consequences for individuals, neighborhoods and communities. Civil rights advocates also have raised concerns about racial and socioeconomic disparities in drug-related arrests, despite evidence that different racial and ethnic groups use illegal drugs at similar rates.

How is our county performing?

In 2017, the drug abuse arrest rate in Berks County was 4.8 per 1,000 residents, lower than the statewide rate of 5.0. Since 2000, the county's drug abuse arrest rate fluctuated year to year, dropping to a low of 2.9 in 2010 before rising. The statewide rate also varied annually, but showed an overall upward trend, increasing 28% from 2000 to 2017.

Compared to neighboring counties, Berks' drug abuse arrest rate in 2017 was similar to Lebanon and lower than Lehigh (5.1) and Schuylkill (5.5). Schuylkill's rate more than quadrupled from 2000 to 2017.

Notes about the data

Drug abuse offenses include all violations of state laws and local ordinances relating to the unlawful possession, sale, use, growing, manufacture, and making of narcotic drugs. Data are from the FBI's Uniform Crime Report. Comparable national data was not available. Differences in rates may reflect a variety of factors, including differences in laws and law enforcement priorities, in addition the severity of drug activity in an area.

There may be additional research available on this topic. Click on Reports and Resources to learn more.

Drug Abuse Arrests
200020012002200320042005200620072008200920102011201220132014201520162017
Pennsylvania3.94.14.14.04.34.34.54.74.54.34.54.44.54.54.64.54.55.0
Berks County3.93.73.33.83.53.33.33.83.53.12.93.23.83.44.14.13.44.8
Berks County Regions
Central
Northeast
South
Southeast
West
Reading city
Berks County Peers
Chester County2.21.92.21.92.32.62.12.52.42.32.82.82.72.92.92.92.72.8
Lancaster County3.02.72.52.42.52.32.22.02.01.92.01.92.22.02.22.42.53.4
Lebanon County2.32.83.23.03.13.63.53.22.92.92.92.42.22.43.63.63.64.4
Lehigh County3.64.84.04.24.03.73.83.43.33.33.12.93.94.04.04.14.25.1
Montgomery County2.62.52.42.52.93.13.43.63.43.23.23.33.53.54.03.63.94.3
Schuylkill County1.01.71.31.21.81.72.01.82.42.73.03.13.43.34.15.75.75.5

Source: Pennsylvania Uniform Crime Reporting System




Number of Drug Abuse Arrests
200020012002200320042005200620072008200920102011201220132014201520162017
Pennsylvania48,19450,59450,52049,71553,32554,10656,44658,78357,02854,48356,71655,51257,35458,11058,83957,01558,01964,409
Berks County1,4691,4151,2601,4781,3761,2981,3351,5281,4431,2681,1781,3171,5881,4011,7061,6961,4261,991
Berks County Regions
Central
Northeast
South
Southeast
West
Reading city
Berks County Peers
Chester County9648249958491,0781,2011,0301,2101,1891,1321,3851,4161,3471,4561,4761,4771,4061,465
Lancaster County1,4021,2681,1901,1481,2221,1231,1101,0371,0059841,0249701,1331,0771,1571,2741,3671,869
Lebanon County272337392364385449443420378387381321292320487501496617
Lehigh County1,1081,5261,2751,3491,2991,2371,2931,1461,1541,1351,1011,0321,3901,4151,4351,4781,5141,854
Montgomery County1,9621,9311,8321,9432,2252,4512,6242,8132,6602,5752,5282,6642,8422,8173,2262,9723,1643,522
Schuylkill County151247194183258249297269356404448462496486602814815779

Source: Pennsylvania Uniform Crime Reporting System




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