The news seems to feature a new, horrifying incident of violence every day. Whether you get your news from the television, a newspaper or your Facebook feed, you may be under the impression that violent crime is increasing. As it turns out, this impression is very much incorrect.
A new study has been released on the prevalence of violent crime in the United States. The data from this study predicts a decrease in 2017’s overall crime rate. If this trend holds through the end of the year, then 2017 will have the second-lowest rate of crime in over 25 years.
A decrease in crime rates
The study was conducted by the Brennan Center for Justice at the NYU School of Law. The institute collected crime statistics from the police departments of 30 of the country’s largest cities. By reviewing historical data, researchers were able to predict the crime trends for the remainder of 2017.
According to the data, the rate of violent crime in the United States is projected to decrease by a modest 0.6 percent; the murder rate will decrease by a slightly larger 2.5 percent. Overall, 2017’s crime rate is likely to decrease by a total of 1.8 percent. These may not seem like large figures, but they are indicative of a major development: If crime statistics remain stable through the rest of December, 2017 will have the second-lowest crime rate since 1990. The crime rate’s decrease is largely due to the stabilization of crime in Washington, D.C. and Chicago. Violence in these two cities spiked in the past few years, but remained level this year.
Crime by the numbers
The Brennan Center’s report included several other interesting statistics about crime in 2017:
- In 2017, there were approximately 4,000 crimes per 100,000 people. Of these, just over 500 were violent in nature.
- The rate of murder was approximately 10 murders per 100,000 people.
- The city with the most crimes was Portland, Ore., with 6,784 crimes per 100,000 people.
- The city with the fewest crimes was New York, N.Y., with 1.965 crimes per 100,000 people