Press Release
Key Findings in New California Department of Justice Report: Crime Rates are Down, and Number of Adults on Probation at a Thirty-Year Low


Sacramento, CA, July 5, 2019 – The California Attorney General Criminal Department of Justice Statistics Center released a report—Crime in California—that shows noteworthy progress has been made in California in regards to probation. The number of adult and juvenile arrest numbers in 2018 has significantly decreased and are at all-time lows. The report also points out that the overall crime rates throughout the state have decreased.

“This demonstrates tremendous progress which we believe can be linked to our implementation of the reforms focusing on rehabilitation as a public safety strategy,” said Karen Pank, Executive Director for the Chief Probation Officers of California. “Probation in California has helped transform the way we approach our criminal justice system. While some skeptics believed that the reforms would lead to an increase in crime rates, we have seen declines in crime rates. Probation is focused on rehabilitation and promoting positive behavior in our communities, and clearly this approach is changing lives and making a huge impact on reduced crime rates throughout our state.”

There were several key findings on adult probation including:

  • In 2018, the total number of adults on active probation was 209,763 – its lowest since 1984.
  • From 2017 to 2018, there was a 12.9 percent decrease in the total rate of adults placed on probation.
  • There was a 13.4 percent decrease in the rate of adults placed on probation for a misdemeanor offense. 
  • A two percent increase in the total rate of adults removed from probation.

Additionally, as crime rates are at all new lows, the juvenile probation rates are noteworthy. From 2017 to 2018, the juvenile total arrest rate decreased 17.9 percent.

The California Department of Justice Crime in California report uses statewide crime rates provided by California law enforcement agencies. To view the full report, visit the Department of Justice website.

For more information about CPOC, please go to

Media Contact:  Laura Dixon 510-384-3020