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Violent Crime in U.S. Rises

Timothy Williams, a journalist at the New York Times metro desk, reports on the rise in violent crime rates in the United States. Williams notes that "while crime over all and violent crime remain well below their levels of the 1980s and 1990s, last year was the first time violent crime increased in consecutive years since 2005 and 2006". 

Mark Kleiman, a Professor of Public Policy and Director of the Crime and Justice Initiative at New York University’s Marron Institute, weighs in: 

“This is ominous,” said Mark Kleiman, a criminologist at New York University’s Marron Institute of Urban Management. “What you worry about is that the trend is broken, and the numbers are going to go back up. A 20 percent increase in homicides over the past two years is not trivial. We’ve got what looks like a serious problem here.”

Williams cites that despite the Trump Administration's language on crime rates - the President refering to it as "american carnage" -, only pockets of increased crime exist and "there is no indication that we’re in the midst of a crime wave, and no justification to return to the failed policies of the past.” 

One potential theory questions the trust civilians have in the police force in light of their mistreatment of African-Americans. "Proponents of the theory maintain that in cities where police departments treat citizens with disrespect and engage in brutality, residents will eventually stop cooperating with the police, which will diminish officers’ ability to solve crimes.". Cities like Chicago, Baltimore, Charlotte, St. Louis and Milwaukee have all experienced heightned violent crime and have all been "coupled with questionable police shootings that prompted rioting or other civil disturbances". However, Williams writes that "current data suggests that violence may be tailing off in 2017, at least moderately.". 

In an analysis of the nation’s largest cities, the Brennan Center for Justice at the New York University School of Law projected that violent crime would drop this year by 0.6 percent and that the overall crime rate would fall by 1.8 percent.

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