In 1989, the City of Brotherly Love set a new record for homicides, at 489 souls. The record didn’t last long, as 505 people gave up the ghost in Philadelphia’s streets the following year, but, after that, the number of murders started declining, and 1989 still holds the silver medal.
Well, not anymore: as of 11:59 PM on Sunday, December 27th, Philadelphia tied that 489 number, with four days left to go in 2020. With a current average of 1.3508 homicides per day, Philly ought to easily move past that number, and end up with 494 or 495 homicides. Mayor Jim Kenney (D-Philadelphia), District Attorney Larry Krasner (D-Philadelphia) and Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw ought to be really proud of the jobs that they have done.
Really, it wasn’t easy for them. When Mayor Michael Nutter (D-Philadelphia) and Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey retired in first week of January, 2016, they left a city which saw 280 homicides in their last year. The year before Messrs Nutter and Ramsey took office, 2007, Philly had suffered through 391 killings. In their first year in office, the number of homicides dropped by 60, to 331.
In 2007, the homicide rate was 27.3 per 100,000 population. By 2013, it was down to 15.9. A bad spike in 2015, their last year in office, saw the murder rate jump to 17.9, as there were 280 killings that year, up from 248 the previous year.
In 2017, it jumped to 21.1, and then to 22.2 in 2018 and 2019. All of the progress under Messrs Nutter and Ramsey had been undone.
Now, at the end of 2020, projecting 494 homicides, and with the city’s population last guesstimated at 1.556 million, the homicide rate figures out to 31.75 per 100.000. Even if the last four days of the year pass with no more killings, the rate works out to 31.43. Either would be the highest number since 1997. Mr Krasner has accomplished what he set out to do, with his cockamamie social justice version of law enforcement.
Everyone hears about Chicago, where murders have skyrocketed under laughable Mayor Lori Lightfoot. According to The Chicago Tribune’s Tracking Chicago Homicides page, last updated following Sunday, December 20, 2020, the Windy City had seen 753 murders. That’s a lot of blood running into the gutters. But with a population of 2.706 million, the homicide rate there is 27.83, pending, of course, the final blood tally for the year. That’s a lot lower than Philadelphia’s! If Philly had Chicago’s murder rate, there’d be about 60 fewer people murdered in the streets. That’s how bad Philadelphia has become.
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