Three Factors Behind Chicago’s Homicide Rate: Are Police Reluctant to Engage?

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As the Black Lives Matter movement grew in 2016, so did the murder rates in Chicago.   The city has reached a record high in murder rates with nearly 90 percent of the murders committed by the hands of blacks and not the police.  The violence is spiraling out of control and many wonder if the police have become reluctant to engage in the black on black gang violence in city’s south and west sides.

ABC News contributor cites three factors behind the city’s homicide rate in 2016 which ended with Chicago’s worst homicide rate in 20 years.  According to The Associated Press,  there were  4,331 shooting victims during the year, accounting for a violent year in Chicago  that ended with 762 homicides.   ABC News contributor cites three factors behind the city’s homicide rate.

ABC News contributor John Cohen, a law enforcement and homeland security expert whose roles have included counterterrorism coordinator for the Department of Homeland Security, described the violence in Chicago as “spiraling out of control.”

Beyond Chicago, he said, “a growing number of major cities are receiving a significant increase in robberies, homicides and aggravated assaults.”

He cited three factors he believes may be behind the uptick in violence:

1. An increase in gang activity and violent behavior by career criminals.

2. An increase in the availability of illegal guns, coupled with an increase in criminals’ willingness to use them.

3. And an increase in the reluctance by law enforcement to engage in proactive, violence prevention policies. Such hesitancy, Cohen said, is because “officers of various ranks are worried they will respond to a split-second decision and end up being the next person blasted all over the media and will lose their job.”

Read more on the prevalence of gang violence click here.

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