Update (Nov. 11): The murder crisis in Baltimore City could set a record this year.
The current homicide count is 296 as of Sunday afternoon, following a fatal shooting Saturday morning.
In the next week, the murder count could breach 300 for the fifth year in a row.
With 57 days left in the year, the city could record the most murders ever, would need to break 344 homicides, a record that was set in 2015.
Councilman Leon Pickett, who represents Baltimore's seventh district, told CBS 13 Baltimore that the murder crisis is "unacceptable."
"Let's be clear that one murder in our city is too much," Pickett said. "The fact that we're yet again approaching almost 300 murders is unacceptable. Everybody needs to rise up and express the outrage that should be with city approaching that."
This time last year, the city saw about the same number of homicides (around 300).
"We've got to change the culture in our city where people are resolving issues with violent means," Pickett said.
Baltimore has the second-worst homicide rate in the country, right behind St. Louis.
For the past several years, homicides across major US metropolitan areas have declined, except for Baltimore City.
The media has widely criticized President Trump for tweeting about the social-economic chaos in the Baltimore metro area.
....As proven last week during a Congressional tour, the Border is clean, efficient & well run, just very crowded. Cumming District is a disgusting, rat and rodent infested mess. If he spent more time in Baltimore, maybe he could help clean up this very dangerous & filthy place— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 27, 2019
And the tragedy of Baltimore is widely due to five decades of deindustrialization, coupled with severe wealth inequality in the inner cities.
The opioid epidemic, sparked by local hospitals handing out Oxycontin like candy for two decades, has undoubtedly weighed on the local population.
Also, five decades of Democrats running the city have certainly accelerated Baltimore's demise.
Baltimore City will continue to descend into chaos into the early 2020s.
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So here we go again, another depressing story from Baltimore City, a region that is imploding on itself and suffering from a murders crisis, opioid epidemic, a wide gap in wealth/health/education inequalities, and deindustrialization.
In this report, we're only going to focus on the murder crisis and gently touch on the opioid epidemic (because they go hand in hand), however, please search our archives for other stories on Baltimore, because the implosion there is what will be coming to many other inner cities across the country in the 2020s.
With that being said, Baltimore City could be on track to surpass last year's 309 homicides, and if current trends persist, there is a chance that homicides could hit a record high, which means the city could see 342, a level that was previously set in 2015 and 2017.
"Baltimore is on course to reach more than 300 homicides for the fifth year in a row, with 232 killings through Wednesday compared to 199 at the same time last year," The Baltimore Sun said.
To combat the murder crisis, the federal government and Baltimore City Police unveiled a permanent "strike force" comprised of detectives, prosecutors, and federal agents will begin operations to target Baltimore drug gangs and their Mexican suppliers, who have been flooding the city with heroin and fentanyl.
No details were provided if the strike force will target hospitals and pharmaceutical companies who continue pumping legal opioids onto the streets. Legal opioids kicked off the opioid crisis across the city several decades ago, not Baltimore gangs and their Latin American suppliers.
As shown in the chart below, cumulative homicide trends are likely to record the 5th consecutive year of murders over 300.
The next chart shows most of the homicides this year have been caused by a gun.
Geographically speaking, the killings aren't situated in just one part of the town but are more widespread.
Last week, we reported how one neighborhood in the city transformed into a warzone. We said: "There was so much gunfire at one point that not even a single rat was spotted on the streets of East Baltimore City."
🚨Officer Down🚨 Officer struck by gunfire in Baltimore during pursuit as innocent civilians jump for cover during the shooting. If you see Officers pointing their weapons at a suspect, please get out of the line of fire. Find a safe place if you really need to record. pic.twitter.com/OKD6aAWZsq— Sgt.Helper (@1Cycle20) August 29, 2019
On a per-capita basis, Baltimore's homicide rate is the highest in the country and is on par with a war zone.
We said this last week, and we'll repeat it: "There's no meaningful policy in place to turn Baltimore around in the next decade. So in the meantime, if you value your life, stay away from Baltimore."