Once again this year, the Brennan Center for Justice has analyzed violent crime stats from the 30 largest cities in America to provide some insight on national trends. Not surprisingly, this year's report is full of more bad news for the residents of cities like Baltimore and Chicago that have experienced devastating spikes in homicides over the past two years.
Looking at homicides per capita in 2017, Baltimore is clearly the most dangerous large city in the U.S. with a murder rate that is more than 4x the average of other large cities and some 40% higher than the second most dangerous city of Detroit. To put things in perspective, the murder rate in Baltimore is now exactly tied with Venezuela at 57.2 murders per 100,000 residents.
Of course, as our readers are undoubtedly aware, high violent crime rates in cities like Baltimore and Chicago are hardly a new phenomenon. Therefore, we decided to take a look at year-over-year changes in murder rates by city and made some interesting discoveries. While Charlotte saw the biggest YoY spike, cities like San Francisco and Seattle, both of which are experiencing tech-induced economic booms, were also at the top of the list.
Finally, and not surprisingly, in terms of total homicides, the city of Chicago is still the big 'winner' in 2017 with nearly double the number of murders of Baltimore.
Of course, as the Brennan Center notes, it's not all bad news as aggregate crime in the nation's top 30 cities declined 2.7%...
The overall crime rate in the 30 largest cities in 2017 is estimated to decline slightly from the previous year, falling by 2.7 percent. If this trend holds, crime rates will remain near historic lows.
The violent crime rate will also decrease slightly, by 1.1 percent, essentially remaining stable. Violent crime remains near the bottom of the nation’s 30-year downward trend.
The 2017 murder rate in the 30 largest cities is estimated to decline by 5.6 percent. Large decreases this year in Chicago and Detroit, as well as small decreases in other cities, contributed to this decline. The murder rate in Chicago — which increased significantly in 2015 and 2016 — is projected to decline by 11.9 percent in 2017. It remains 62.4 percent above 2014 levels. The murder rate in Detroit is estimated to fall by 9.8 percent. New York City’s murder rate will also decline again, to 3.3 killings per 100,000 people.
Conclusion: "What the hell is going on in Chicago"...and Baltimore and Detroit and Memphis and San Francisco and Seattle and....
Trump on crime in Chicago: "What the hell is going on in Chicago? What the hell is happening there?" pic.twitter.com/HMTANkGYSz— Axios (@axios) December 15, 2017
Here is the full report from the Brennan Center for Justice: