Posted: Jan 8, 2008, 9:17 AM
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Los Angeles
Murder Rate Down Across US; LA Lowest in 40 Years
Wow. I've got to be honest: I didn't think I'd read a headline like that anytime soon, especially given that less than 10 years ago we were leading the nation in homicides.
This is very refreshing and encouraging news. Even still, 379+ is still far too many senseless killings. I pray this number continues to drop.
I really didn't think I'd ever say this, but excellent work Chief Bratton and Mayor Villaraigosa. Of course, the true credit goes to all of our men & women in blue. We just need a few thousand more of them to keep the crime rate dropping.
Here's the local story from CBS2:
L.A. Homicide Rate Drops To Near-Record Low
LOS ANGELES (AP) ― With this year nearing its end, Los Angeles is on track to record its lowest homicide rate since 1970, when 394 people were killed.
As of Dec. 15, 379 people had been killed in the city this year.
The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department also has seen a decline, registering a 25 percent drop in homicides this year over last.
Police attribute the decline to a variety of factors, including more focused policing -- and chance.
One of the sharpest declines has been in gang-related killings.
In the San Fernando Valley as of Dec. 15, there had been about 25 gang-related killings. That's nearly cut in half from 2006, when there were 46.
In February, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Los Angeles Police Chief William Bratton announced a gang crackdown, sending more officers into gang-infested areas and are now working with interventionists across the city.
(© 2008 The Associated Press.)
Here's the national story from ABC News:
Murders Down Across the Country
The number of murders has dropped so sharply in Los Angeles, even the police are shocked.
Assistant chief of the Los Angeles Police Department, Sharon Papa, said, "It's huge, it's huge for us. We haven't seen the homicide rate this low since 1970."
Murders in L.A. are down more than 17 percent. It's particularly significant, when you consider that L.A. had a million fewer people in 1970.
For decades, Los Angeles was victimized by gang violence, racial upheaval, and police scandals, but the city has gentrified, services have improved, and the police have become more professional.
George Tita, a criminologist at the University of California at Irvine, said, "What it really speaks to is an increasing level of trust within and between the community and the Los Angeles Police Dept."
Big cities across the country are seeing similar declines.
In New York, murders are on their way to a 40-year low — down an expected 10 percent to 12 percent. In Oakland, murders are down 21 percent. And in Houston, murders are down 12.6 percent. In Philadelphia, murders are down only about 1 percent from 2006, which hit a nine-year high.
Police in Philadelphia, Los Angeles and New York now use a crime tracking system called Compstat, which, they believe, enhances their ability to fight crime.
The statistics allow a police department to analyze a crime as it's happening, and put their resources where they're needed.
Police departments stress, however, that statistics only tell part of the story, but for many U.S. cities, the story this year has a much better ending.
Grow UP L.A.
Last edited by dcmcgov; Jan 8, 2008 at 5:54 PM.
Reason: added more info