Robberies have jumped by 13% and aggravated assaults by 2.6% in big U.S. cities so far this year
Major US cities have witnessed a worrying spike in robberies and attacks this year and homicide rates remain high, police chiefs warn — as concerns about violent crime will boost turnout in the upcoming midterm elections.
Major Cities Chiefs Association (MCCA) of senior officers of America’s largest military has issued a mid-year warning report of ‘shocking numbers’ of violent crime in urban areas compared to the same period last year.
The troubling data comes as law and order remain key issues for voters in November’s midterm elections, and soft-on-crime policies and calls to punish police could hurt Democrats in some crime-ridden cities.
“Compared to the 2019 half-year figures, the cities that are members of the MCCA experienced a 50 percent increase in homicides and an approximately 36 percent increase in serious crimes,” the group said in a statement.
“These shocking numbers show how the continued rise in violent crime has disproportionately affected large urban areas.”
The survey found that homicides and rapes in major U.S. cities fell slightly from the same time last year — though they’re still high after peaking at about 30 percent in homicides between 2019 and 2020.
Still, not all cities saw a decline in homicide rates. Atlanta saw an increase of about 20 percent and New Orleans a 40 percent increase in homicides, while Washington DC, Baltimore, Dallas, Phoenix and Denver also saw increases.
Scenes like this 70-year-old woman being punched and kicked in the head by multiple assailants in broad daylight in San Francisco are alarmingly common in crime-ridden cities
Overall, violent crime rates rose 4.4 percent in the first half of the year compared to the same period in 2021, mainly due to sharp increases in robbery rates (13 percent) and aggravated assault (2.6 percent) ).
New York City registered a 39 percent increase in robberies and a 21 percent increase in major assaults, while Los Angeles saw those numbers rise 22 percent and 21 percent, respectively. San Francisco and Baltimore also saw steep increases.
It’s unclear what’s driving the surge, but Covid-19 has fueled massive social unrest and derailed government and community support systems. Gun sales also surged during the pandemic.
The police forces are overloaded. Crime rates are soaring, even as officers exhausted by the pandemic and disillusioned by calls to cut funding after George Floyd’s murder, quit or retire sooner than they can be replaced.
Police chiefs try to recruit recruits in a tight labor market while rethinking what services they can provide and what role officers should play in their communities. Many have shifted experienced officers to patrol duties to keep up with 911 calls.
Pictured: Ezekiel Kelly, 19, caught on camera flashing an eerie grin (back left in a police car and right in a mugshot) after allegedly shooting four people and wounding three others in Memphis. He led police on an hour-long manhunt after a warning was issued, which closed off parts of the city
The MCCA, which brings together 70 police forces, said in August that it is studying gun trends, the justice system and other issues to try to reduce “the number of tragedies that have become far too common.”
The group’s data confirms what residents and visitors of major cities already know. In recent days, a tourist was raped at a New York City subway station and a burglar broke into the home of a mayoral candidate in Los Angeles.
Chicago women entrepreneurs, meanwhile, say they are leaving the crime-ridden downtown and moving to the suburbs after a spate of burglaries and armed robberies of convenience stores.
Soft-on-crime prosecutors have come under fire. Memphis mayor Jim Strickland has panned the decision to release Ezekiel Kelly early from prison, only for the 22-year-old who was set to go on a homicidal blowout in the city last week.
Violent crime — along with gun control, inflation and the economy — is prominent in voters’ minds ahead of the midterm elections, which will take control of the Democrat-occupied House and Senate for the remainder of President Joe’s first term. Biden will determine.
About three-quarters of registered voters said the economy was very important to them, while about six in 10 voters cited gun policy, violent crime, health care, voting policy and education, a Pew Research Center said. opinion poll found last month.
The Sugar Bliss bakery and other businesses in downtown Chicago may close due to a rise in crime, like this brutal intruder trying to steal a wallet
A commercial robbery at a Barnes and Noble bookstore in lower Manhattan this month. New York City has witnessed a startling increase in violent crime this year