After three people were fatally shot in Columbus over the weekend in separate incidents, bringing the city closer to a record-breaking number of homicides, Police Chief Kim Jacobs issued a call for action and a call for peace. Within an hour of her statement, a man was shot and killed, bringing this year’s total to 130.
White homicide victims increased by 22 percent between 2014-2016—not too far off the 29 percent increase in black victims. One possible reason: the opioid epidemic. New evidence reveals a spike in drug-related violence reminiscent of the crack cocaine era, says a leading criminologist.
The national crime rate last year remained about the same as the 2015 total, the U.S. Justice Department’s National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) reported Thursday. Residents aged 12 or older experienced 5.7 million violent victimizations, a rate of 21.1 per 1,000 persons in 2016.
Between 2010 and 2016, crime in Los Angeles County — including property and violent crime — rose by 5 percent even as overall crime in the rest of the state fell by the same rate. A series of state-wide criminal justice reform policies didn’t seem to have much of an impact, said criminologist Charis Kubrin, adding, “The action, if you will, is at the local level.”
That means 2017 is now Baltimore’s second-deadliest year on record on a per-capita basis, with a month left to go. The record was set in 2015, when there were 344 homicides. Mayor Catherine Pugh says violence in the city is “out of control.”
An early November shooting was reclassified as a homicide after the victim died. The change brought the number of homicides in St. Louis so far this year to 185. Last year on the same date, the city had 165 homicides.