Police Supt. McCarthy on Chicago Crime

Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy, along with Mayor Rahm Emanuel, touted new data this week showing a decrease in Chicago violent crime. This data from a Yale University study released this month stands in stark contrast to FBI statistics publicized this fall which pointed to Chicago as the new murder capital of the United States.

The Yale study, conducted by Professor Andrew V. Papachristos, tracks serious crime over the span of the last 48 years showing that Chicago is on track to having the lowest violent crime rate since 1972 and the lowest homicide rate since 1967.

According to the data, Chicago actually rates 19th in violent crime among large U.S. cities as of 2012, with levels similar to Houston and Minneapolis. The study uses index crime rate based on population.

However, the study notes that Chicago is a city of community areas and that “crime rates are by no means equal across neighborhoods.” Some city residents questioned the new data Monday claiming that there are still a number of shootings on the south and west sides of the city.

Gang-related crime also continues to plague the city. While murders among rival gangs has decreased, the study denotes that killings among different crews of the same gang are trending upwards.

“The truth is crime is coming down. But it’s coming down from a high,” said Ald. Willie Cochran (22nd).

We talk with Supt. McCarthy about these new numbers and what Chicago police strategy will look like in 2014.