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Robberies Up Sharply in Big Cities, Insuring Crime As Election Issue

Murders and gun assaults in major cities fell in the first half of this year, while the robbery total jumped 19 percent, reports the think tank Council on Criminal Justice.

In 23 cities with available data, the number of homicides was down two percent compared with the first half of 2021. Gun assaults dropped six percent, but that number was based on responses from only 12 cities.

A similar trend on murders and robberies was reported for the first quarter of 2022 by the Major Cities Chiefs Association based on data from 68 cities.

Although the new data represent only part of the nation, the continued high totals in key violent crime categories mean that crime will be a major issue in many midyear election campaigns.

The murder numbers remained 39 percent higher than the first half of 2019, before the COVID-19


“It is heartening to see the homicide numbers fall, even slightly, but American cities continue to lose too many of their residents to bloodshed,” said criminologist Richard Rosenfeld of the University of Missouri St. Louis, the study’s co-author, adding that "These elevated levels of violence require an urgent response from elected leaders. We must put evidence-backed strategies in place now to make communities safer.”