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 2018, the drug abuse arrest rate in Berks County was 4.2 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 27% from 2000 to 2018.

Compared to neighboring counties, Berks' drug abuse arrest rate in 2018 was similar to Lancaster and lower than Lebanon and Lehigh (both at 4.7) and Schuylkill (7.2). Schuylkill's rate increased sevenfold from 2000 to 2018, or from 1 to 7.2.

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
2000200120022003200420052006200720082009201020112012201320142015201620172018
Pennsylvania3.94.14.14.04.34.34.54.74.54.34.54.44.54.54.64.54.55.05.0
Berks County3.93.73.33.83.53.33.33.83.53.12.93.23.83.44.14.13.44.84.2
Berks County Regions
Central
Northeast
South
Southeast
West
Reading city
Berks County Peers
Chester County2.21.92.21.92.32.62.12.52.42.32.82.82.72.92.92.92.72.82.9
Lancaster County3.02.72.52.42.52.32.22.02.01.92.01.92.22.02.22.42.53.54.1
Lebanon County2.32.83.23.03.13.63.53.22.92.92.92.42.22.43.63.63.64.44.7
Lehigh County3.64.84.04.24.03.73.83.43.33.33.12.93.94.04.04.14.25.14.7
Montgomery County2.62.52.42.52.93.13.43.63.43.23.23.33.53.54.03.63.94.33.5
Schuylkill County1.01.71.31.21.81.72.01.82.42.73.03.13.43.34.15.65.75.57.2

Source: Pennsylvania Uniform Crime Reporting System




Number of Drug Abuse Arrests
2000200120022003200420052006200720082009201020112012201320142015201620172018
Pennsylvania48,19450,59450,52049,71553,32554,10656,44658,78357,02854,48356,71655,51257,35458,11058,83957,01558,01964,40963,760
Berks County1,4691,4151,2601,4781,3761,2981,3351,5281,4431,2681,1781,3171,5881,4011,7061,6961,4261,9911,746
Berks County Regions
Central
Northeast
South
Southeast
West
Reading city
Berks County Peers
Chester County9648249958491,0781,2011,0301,2101,1891,1321,3851,4161,3471,4561,4761,4771,4061,4651,507
Lancaster County1,4021,2681,1901,1481,2221,1231,1101,0371,0059841,0249701,1331,0771,1571,2741,3671,8692,204
Lebanon County272337392364385449443420378387381321292320487501496617670
Lehigh County1,1081,5261,2751,3491,2991,2371,2931,1461,1541,1351,1011,0321,3901,4151,4351,4781,5141,8541,713
Montgomery County1,9621,9311,8321,9432,2252,4512,6242,8132,6602,5752,5282,6642,8422,8173,2262,9723,1643,5222,927
Schuylkill County1512471941832582492972693564044484624964866028148157791,027

Source: Pennsylvania Uniform Crime Reporting System




INDICATORS TREND | BERKS COUNTY
Early Prenatal Care Increasing
Early Prenatal Care by Mother's Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Children Living in Poverty Increasing
Children Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Single-Parent Families Increasing
Single-Parent Families by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Disengaged Youth Decreasing
Live Births to Teen Mothers Decreasing
Population by Age Not Applicable
Children with Elevated Blood Lead Levels Maintaining
Change in Population by Age and Gender Not Applicable
Change in Total Population by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Households by type Not Applicable
Foreign-Born Population Increasing
Seniors Living Alone Decreasing
Language Diversity Increasing
Unemployment Rate Decreasing
Change in Labor Force Decreasing
Employment to Population ratio Decreasing
Change in Jobs by Sector Not Applicable
Sector Share of Total Jobs Not Applicable
Average Salary by Sector Not Applicable
Change in Average Salary by Sector Not Applicable
People Entering/Leaving County/Region for Work Not Applicable
Public Assistance Maintaining
Spending for Local Governments Maintaining
Spending for Counties Maintaining
Spending for School Districts Maintaining
Prekindergarten Participation Increasing
Students Eligible for Free/Reduced Price Lunch Increasing
English Language Learners Increasing
Students Receiving Special Education Services Increasing
Per Student Spending Maintaining
High School Cohort Graduation Rate Increasing
Education Levels of Adults Not Applicable
Education Levels of Adults, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Brain Drain/Gain Maintaining
Plans of High School Graduates Not Applicable
Enrollment in Local Colleges Decreasing
Median Household Income Maintaining
Median Household Income by Household Type Not Applicable
Living Wage Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty Increasing
Working Poor Maintaining
People Receiving Federal Food Assistance Increasing
People Receiving Supplemental Security Income Increasing
Health Status Not Applicable
People Enrolled in Medicaid Managed Care Increasing
People Without Health Insurance Decreasing
Physically Inactive Adults Not Applicable
Adults Who are Overweight or Obese Not Applicable
Students in 7-12 Overweight or Obese Not Applicable
Cancer Incidence Decreasing
Students in K-6 Overweight or Obese Not Applicable
Prevalence of Mental Illness Maintaining
Vacant Housing Units Increasing
Homeownership Rates Decreasing
Cost of Homeownership Maintaining
Cost of Homeownership, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Cost of Rent Increasing
Cost of Rent, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Single-Family Home Sales Increasing
Median Single-Family Home Sale Price Maintaining
Tourism Spending Maintaining
Voter Registration Rate Decreasing
Voter Participation Rate Decreasing
Average Charitable Giving Maintaining
Contributions as a Percentage of Income Maintaining
Households With Internet Access Not Applicable
Arts, Entertainment and Recreation Establishments Maintaining
Toxic Chemical Releases Decreasing
Violent Crimes Maintaining
Property Crimes Decreasing
Incarceration Rates Maintaining
Drug Abuse Offenses Increasing
Drug Abuse Arrests Increasing
Protection from Domestic Abuse Maintaining
Average Travel Time to Work Increasing
Crashes Involving Alcohol Decreasing
Households Without Vehicles Decreasing