Breaking Down Richmond’s Murder Rate

Rachel DePompaRachel DePompa – bio | email 

As of now, we stand at 27 homicides for the year. Another shooting is currently under investigation and we’re awaiting word as to whether the death of a women in the Museum District last week is a homicide. Last year we had 32 murders… A 37 year low. Once you reach a record low, there is inevitably no where to go but back up. That fact, coupled with the economy means crimes of desperation are on the rise. We’ve seen a string of convenience store robbers in the past week, where the suspects opened fire. A clerk was killed, another was shot six times, but is expected to survive. I spoke with Commonwealth’s Attorney Michael Herring at length today. He, and Police Chief Bryan Norwood say the economy is a factor. Drug activity is also soaring again. There are a lot of reasons contributing to a rise in the rate, but you have to also step back and look at the bigger picture. Even 30 or 50 murders this year is far less than the 80 to 90 we averaged just 10 years ago or the 180 a few years prior to that. Last year may have been an anomaly, but it’s too soon to start pointing the finger at local agencies or people in new jobs. We need to stay vigilant as a community and watch out for our neighbors.

Successes so far this year:

Commercial Burglaries- down 49%

Commercial Robberies- down 47%

Aggravated Assaults with Firearm- down 26%

Purse Snatching- down 43%

Crime to watch so far this year:

Individual Robberies- up 10%

Theft from Buildings- up 31%

Theft from Motor Vehicle- up 53%

 

 

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