2021: The Year of Homicides in US Major Cities

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In 2021, Chicago recorded its deadliest year in 25 years, while several other major cities experienced record-tying or even breaking crime rates.

Axios compiled a list of headlines over the weekend to sum up the year. Take a look:

L.A. Times: “L.A. gun deaths most in 15 years.”

Washington Post: “Killings rocketed in Md. suburbs and D.C. in 2021.”

Philadelphia Inquirer“14 shot in Philly as new year begins.”

Atlanta Journal-Constitution: “With 158th homicide, city passes 2020 total.”

Portland Oregonian“‘The city feels lawless.'”

Minneapolis Star Tribune: “Mpls. nears homicide record.”

San Jose Mercury News: “Oakland ends a deadly 2021 … City’s homicides hit a 15-year high.”

Cleveland Plain Dealer: “Suburban Cleveland … Homicides up 29% in 2021 from a year ago.”

New Orleans Times-Picayune: “Murder toll the highest since 2004.”

In all, 12 major U.S. cities — including Portland, Philadelphia, Louisville, and Austin — broke annual homicide records in 2021.

A December Police Executive Research Forum cited the declining number of active police officers for the crime spike, and there’s hardly reason to dispute the claim. The retirement rate in police departments nationwide jumped 45% over 2020 and 2021, and another 18% of officers resigned.

As we discussed late last year, crime rates began to surge following the death of George Floyd, when leaders of dark blue cities supported movements to defund law enforcement while they refused to condemn violent BLM riots.

So how do cities plan to combat these rising crime rates? I guess by letting lawbreakers go unscathed.

“Nobody’s getting arrested anymore,” Robert Boyce, retired chief of detectives for the New York Police Department, said. “People are getting picked up for gun possession and they’re just let out over and over again.”

Ahh, so they will go on to commit worse crimes. Got it.

There is no bigger crisis in the U.S. than these skyrocketing homicide rates. Yet politicians so often ignore these numbers and focus instead on COVID cases and making sure the guy with the goofy Viking hat from the Capitol never lives a normal life again.


Written by Bobby Burack

Bobby Burack covers media, politics, and sports at OutKick.


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