According to an analysis by the Brennan Center for Justice, crime in the country’s 30 largest cities fell by 5.5 percent this year, with the biggest decreases in Seattle, Portland, and Boston.
Despite the overall drop in crime, the murder rate has gone up—by 14.6 percent in those cities. While the country’s four most populous cities—New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, and Houston—all saw increases in murders, the spike is largely due to just two cities: Baltimore and Washington, D.C. The capital’s murder rate grew by a staggering 48.6 percent while Baltimore’s rose by 51.7 percent. The report cautioned that current murder rates are generally low, which means a small increase in number can cause a high percentage increase, but warned that the changes in Baltimore and D.C. were serious.
But Americans’ perception of crime does not align with the numbers. In an October Gallup poll, the majority of respondents said there was more crime in their area than there was a year ago, and 70 percent believed there was more crime in the country than there was a year ago.