Law enforcement officials from Washington, D.C., St. Louis, Chicago, Baltimore and other municipalities held an “urgent summit” Monday in Washington to discuss this summer’s spike in violence in large U.S. cities, reports the Washington Post. The event was hosted by the Major Cities Chiefs Association, which said a survey of its members showed that police in many cities are seeing more guns on the streets and more killings. Four of the nation's largest cities — New York, Chicago, Houston and Philadelphia — recorded a rise in homicides by mid-July compared with the same period in 2014.
The District has experienced the same trend, with 87 homicides so far this year, compared with 105 for all of 2014. Guns were a focus of much of the discussion at the summit. The chiefs called for more stringent gun laws, including harsher penalties for gun crimes and the use of high-capacity magazines. In Chicago, police have seized more than 3,400 illegal firearms this year.