July 26, 2016

CNN Crime Story Fails to Disclose Double-Digit Rise in Big-City Murder Rate

The left, from President Barack Obama on down, has denied that there has been a significant spike in violent crime while demonizing GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump for citing it. The press is doing what it can to assist in the denials, but inconvenient facts continue to get in the way.

At CNN.com Tuesday morning, Wesley Bruer acknowledged that “Violent crime is on the rise so far this year in major cities across the US.” However, in a curious omission, he failed to tell readers the percentage increase in the homicide rate. A bit of investigation reveals that the situation in America’s largest cities continues to deteriorate, and at an accelerating rate.

Bruer’s omission conveniently comes just ahead of Tuesday night’s Democratic National Convention program. The night’s wrap-up, following Bill Clinton, is scheduled to be an appearance by “Mothers of the Movement,” featuring mothers who sadly and wrongly continue to believe that their deceassed sons — Trayvon Martin, Eric Garner and Michael Brown — were victims of vigilante and police injustice.

Bruer, as seen in the last bolded paragraph below, did provide a percentage increase for this year’s first quarter. As we’ll see, that percentage, combined with information published elsewhere, indicates that the murder-rate increase has hit double digits, and that the second quarter’s result was worse than the first:

Violent crime rising in US cities, study finds

Violent crime is on the rise so far this year in major cities across the US compared to the number of homicides, rapes, robberies, assaults and shootings that occurred in the same cities by this point in 2015, a new report has found.

The midyear violent crime survey released Monday by the Major Cities Chiefs Association (MCCA) shows 307 more homicides so far in 2016, according to data from 51 law enforcement agencies from some of the largest US cities.

In addition to a large increase in homicides, major cities in the US have experienced more than 1,000 more robberies, almost 2,000 more aggravated assaults and more than 600 non-fatal shootings in 2016 compared to this time last year. The only category of violent crime not reflecting an increase when compared to last year is rape.

The 316 homicides reported by the Chicago Police Department were by far the most of any law enforcement agency included in the survey, a 48% increase over last year. The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said there were 110 homicides so far this year, compared to 85 in 2015. San Jose’s 25 homicides more than doubled the amount during the same period last year.

In May, the same group released another report which showed a 9% increase in homicides across dozens of US cities over the first three months of 2016 compared to the previous year.

Responding to Donald Trump’s convention speech last week, in which the Republican presidential nominee spoke of rising crime and violent threats, President Barack Obama downplayed the notion that violence is increasing in the US, though he conceded that there has been an uptick in violence in some major cities.

That 9 percent first-quarter increase is significantly lower than the six-month increase Wall Street Journal reporter Elinson cited in covering the MCCA’s report:

Murders Rise in 29 of Largest U.S. Cities in First Half of 2016
Homicides in Chicago and Orlando, Fla., contribute to much of the increase

The number of murders in 29 of the nation’s largest cities rose during the first six months of the year, according to the results of a survey released by the Major Cities Chiefs Association on Monday.

Overall, homicides jumped 15% in the 51 large cities that submitted crime data, compared with the same year-ago period. But over half that increase was driven by spikes in two cities: Chicago, which has struggled with rising gang violence, and Orlando, where Omar Mateen fatally shot 49 people at a nightclub in June.

A continuing increase in some cities worries city officials who had been hoping last year’s surge was an aberration in the decadeslong decline in the country’s murder rate. After peaking in the 1990s, violent crime rates in the U.S. have in recent years been at their lowest levels in four decades, according to FBI data.

Note the 307-person increase in the number of murders noted by CNN’s Bruer relates to 51 cities in the MCCA report, as does the 15 percent increase cited by the WSJ’s Elinson.

The 307 additional murders actually represents a 15.3 percent increase. As usual, the blogosphere, this time Breitbart News, carried full details the establishment press could have reported but didn’t, namely that the 51 cities involved reported 2,308 murders during the first six months of 2016 and 2,001 during the first six months of 2015.

Subtracting the 49 killed in June’s Orlando terrorist attack leaves 2,259 killed in non-terrorist homicides thus far in 2016. That’s still a 12.9 percent increase for the first six months of 2015 (Both of the Islamic terrorist attacks on U.S. soil in 2015 occurred during last year’s second half.)

Exact calculation of the increase in the second quarter alone isn’t possible, because the MCCA’s first-quarter data covered 63 cities. But it should be clear that the non-terrorist homicide rate in America’s largest cities has risen by a double-digit percentage during this year’s first six months, and that the second quarter’s percentage rise was significantly greater than the first quarter’s reported 9 percent. In other words, the situation in America’s largest cities is deteriorating, and at a faster rate. Why didn’t CNN’s Bruer, or even the Wall Street Journal’s Elinson, who did a better but still incomplete job, tell us that?

Barring a statistical surprise no one expects, the vast majority of the murders discussed here involve blacks killing other blacks. Will Trayvon Martin’s mom, or Eric Garner’s mom, or Michael Brown’s mom have the courage to decry this depressing, growing trend, or will they continue to sing from the violent, irresponsible Black Lives Matter hymnal?

Cross-posted at NewsBusters.org.

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