The rate of black homicides in Missouri is again the nation's highest, says an annual study from the Violence Policy Center reported by the Kansas City Star. It's the second time in four years that Missouri has topped the study. Missouri's black homicide rate was 39.90 per 100,000 people in 2008; Pennsylvania, which topped the list the last two years, was second with a rate of 31.05 per 100,000.
Missouri also topped the list in 2008, when study authors used data from 2005. Kansas City recorded its largest number of homicides of the decade in 2005 with127. The overall homicide rate for all races and all locations is 4.93 per 100,000, the study said. “It's frightening,” said Alvin Brooks, Kansas City anti-crime activist and founder of the Ad Hoc Group Against Crime. Besides Missouri and Pennsylvania, the other states in the top five in this year's study were Indiana, Michigan and Tennessee.