Though crime in Chicago, Illinois has decreased overall in 2012, the murder rate has increased by a shocking 50 percent, reports the Chicago Tribune.
Police Chief Garry McCarthy told the Tribune that there have been 40 murders this month in the Windy City, up from 26 in January of 2011. According to police records, the increase in homicides continues the same violent streak that held the city hostage at the end of last year.
McCarthy shared the tragic details of the crime wave that has ushered in 2012:
We’re at 73 percent murder-by-gunshot right now, which means that the other categories have stacked up…stabbings, asphyxiation.
Former White House Chief-of-Staff and current mayor of Chicago, Rahm Emmanuel, says that gang activity is at the crux of the city’s problems:
Chicago has a problem unlike any other major city given the size of our gangs. Nobody can be content, but we are making progress in the right things that are necessary to bring a level of safety to our streets.”
Over half of the murders occurred in two of Chicago’s most notorious districts, Englewood and Harrison, but McCarthy that says that targeted strategy in those locations will ensure an improvement in safety.