Indianapolis Chief Declares City Safe Despite 2013 Homicide Spike


Rick Hite, chief of the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department, contends that the city remains safe despite a spike this year in homicides, reports the Indianapolis Star. Most homicides, he noted, occurred when both suspects and victims were engaged in criminal activity. On Saturday, three more people died in homicides across the city. “This weekend's incidents were not random acts,” Hite said. ” Unless you are involved in illegal behavior or live a lifestyle which increases your risk of harm, your chances of being a victim of violent crime are reduced significantly.”

“Despite our spike in murders, non-fatal aggravated assaults involving guns are down,” Hite said. Police have classified 109 of this year's 125 homicides as murders, with the other 16 considered justifiable slayings for reasons such as self-defense. “In 2006, Indianapolis recorded 140 murders,” Hite said. “The last four years that number has been below 100.” An analysis of the 2013 homicides showed that 86 of the 109 murder victims this year had “local adult criminal histories,” together accumulating 287 adult felony arrests before their deaths. Thirty-six had a previous weapons arrest, and 52 had a previous drug arrest. Further, 64 had a previous “crimes against persons” arrest. Hite said he was not trying to put a rosy spin on the city's homicides, declaring, “Any intentional death by violent means is unacceptable and will not be tolerated in our city.”

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