The NYU’s Brennan Center calculates that murder rates in America’s 29 largest cities will drop by 7.6 percent over the previous year; falling off to levels approximately equal to 2015 rates. Notably, the report projects a 35 percent decline in homicides in San Francisco, 23.2 percent in Chicago, and 20.9 percent in Baltimore.
According to a study of Chicago sports viewing habits by researchers at the University of California-Davis, crime rates drop during major televised athletic events. But it’s not clear whether the impact of “entertainment diversion” lasts after the game ends.
In its seventh report, John Jay College’s Misdemeanor Justice Project found that, even though arrests for pot possession and other drug-related offenses are down, individuals of color are almost five times more likely to be arrested for drug charges than whites in New York City.
Economist Qiwei He of Clemson University, studying 2010-2016 FBI data, found that access to health care decreased homicide by 7.7 percent; burglary rates by 3.6 percent; motor vehicle thefts by 10 percent; robbery by 6.1 percent; and aggravated assault by 2.7 percent.
Chicago and Baltimore drove the increase in violent crime reports last year, says the Brennan Center for Justice. Its survey found that Chicago accounted for 55.1 percent of the big-city murder rate increase.
Why do the president and his new attorney general keep repeating statements about crime that are plainly false? They want to make the country feel less safe so Trump can sell some of his policies, such as the border wall and Muslim ban, according to one crime expert.
The Center for Public Integrity said it found an overall 20 percent increase in murder in America’s 10 biggest cities for the first six months of 2016. Nine of the 10 showed gains; New York City was the lone exception. Some wonder whether the increase springs from an increasing population of teens and young adults.
And who’s to blame? The media in part. But also politicians like Donald Trump and U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert, a Texas Republican who espouses a know-nothing attitude. “It doesn’t matter what anybody thinks,” Gohmert says. The implications: false impressions of crime could stall criminal justice reforms.