Most homicide victims in Cleveland are criminals being killed by other criminals. The incidents almost always involve black men killing other black men. The deadliest areas are those stricken with poverty and fatherless households. Homicides there are about three times the national average, says the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Cleveland State University professor Wendy Regoeczi has analyzed 389 Cleveland homicides between 1998 and 2002, put the numbers into perspective using U.S. census data, and turned out facts that confirm many people’s suspicions.
She started her study for former Police Chief Ed Lohn and has sent it to the new chief, Michael McGrath. Regoeczi argues that Cleveland must address the problem of poverty and restore police units that former Mayor Jane Campbell cut in 2004 when facing a budget deficit. Since these cuts, homicides have spiked from 86 to well over 100 for the first time since 1996.