Baltimore has been having its worst year for homicides on record.
As the Baltimore Sun reports, the city’s homicide count for 2017 stands at 278. If that pace holds, we’ll end up with more than 350 homicides, making 2017 Baltimore’s worst year ever recorded, not only in the per-capita rate but also in raw numbers.
To put that in greater perspective, New York City, with a population of more than 8.5 million, is on pace for fewer than 333 homicides in 2017 as of September 1. Baltimore is a city of a little more than 600,000.
Another sobering comparison. Chicago, with more than 570 homicides in 2017 to date, is actually faring better than Baltimore on a per-capita basis.
If specific anecdotes carry more weight with you, the Baltimore Police Department’s spokesman, T.J. Smith, lost his own brother to violence in July (and wrote eloquently about the experience on social media).
As violent crime rates fall nationally, some of America’s deadliest cities are seeing increases in violence. St. Louis is also on pace for historically high homicide numbers this year.
Before 2017, Baltimore’s deadliest year per capita was 2015. Its deadliest year in total numbers was 1993.