Cities Journal

Chicago Crime Report: Fewer Murders, But More Shootings

When murders are in question, the City of Chicago has seen its best year since 1965. The drop in the number of murders from 406 in 2013 to 390 in 2014 resulted in the lowest number of murders recorded in the Windy City since the mid-1960s.

The Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy held a press conference earlier this month and shared this number with the members of the press. He added that the overall crime rate in the city has also dropped. He did acknowledge the fact that the number of shootings is on the rise, however.

The number of shootings has increased by 13 percent from the year 2013 but it is still much better than in 2012, when the number of shootings was 14% higher and when Chicago got its nickname Murder Capital. In 2014, the total number of shootings was 2,500 in the period up to December, 20th.

Superintendent McCarthy blamed this rise in the number of shootings on gang activity and certain parts of the city where illegal guns are everywhere. Humboldt Park on the West Side was singled out as one of these “certain pockets”. McCarthy added that “there’s so many guns,” and that “if these guys are throwing rocks at each other we wouldn’t have this problem.”

There have been some claims from Chicago Magazine and some other media that the police department has been altering their crime statistics in order to show progress. McCarthy has come out saying that this is pure “nonsense”.

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