Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Chicago under fire: Murders rising despite decline in overall crime - Chicago Sun-Times

Chicago Police Badge by kevitra (flickr)
The figures are startling. Through the end of June, the number of murders in Chicago was up 37 percent over the same period last year, even as crime overall declined.

Police Supt. Garry McCarthy — hailed as a “Braveheart”-like folk hero after getting out on the streets and leading his troops during the NATO Summit protests in May — is on the hot seat. His key strategy — doing away with mobile strike forces, which formerly were sent out to crime hot spots, and putting more cops back on the beat — has been called a failure by some.

Now, McCarthy is preparing to roll out a new tactic.

Social scientists who have studied murder say they’ve gotten to a point where they can predict who is most likely to become a victim of homicide.

McCarthy wants to take that further. He’s laying plans to have his officers study criminals’ social networks to identify likely killers before they kill.

“It’s going to change the way we do police work,” McCarthy said.

He said other tactics he’s put in place already are paying dividends. On the West Side, for instance, in the Harrison District, the number of murders is actually down this year — by about 40 percent through the end of June.

And citywide, McCarthy said, the police have seen a “decrease in the increase” in shootings this year. Through March, shootings were up 40 percent citywide over the same period the year before, and murders were up 66 percent. Through the end of June, shootings were up by 9 percent compared to 2011, and murders by 37 percent.

“This isn’t declaring victory,” McCarthy said. “This is declaring that we’re starting to move in the right direction."
What exactly is a "decrease in the increase"? That phrase in and of itself doesn't make any sense. It sounds incompetent and that's not to say McCarthy is, but hopefully it just means shootings have gone down. Just odd in my opinion.

This Sun-Times article takes a look at the city's response to the gun violence around the city. The article specifically mentions the iincreasing incidents of murders in Chicago.

Read the whole thing.

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