BRIDGEPORT - Police say new statistics show a significant decrease in violent crime in Bridgeport since the start of 2016.

Shootings in Bridgeport are down 41 percent and murders are down 83 percent since the beginning of the year, according Bridgeport Police Chief AJ Perez.

"We made a commitment to change things and the credit really goes to the men and women of the Bridgeport Police Department," he says.

The police department also says burglaries went down by 30 percent and rapes decreased by 15 percent.

Bridgeport Mayor Joe Ganim says the new figures show an important trend that the city's police department wants to continue.

He says the short-term success his Violent Crime Reduction Task force has helped to achieve needs to continue to reflect a meaningful change.

"It's a battle you never win, but to see our officers committed and to see the results I think makes a big difference, certainly for the perception and the reality of safety in the city," he says.

Bridgeport officials say, however, that while violent crime is down, motor vehicle thefts in the city are up by 16 percent.