One tragic trend that Providence has so far avoided is the soaring murder rates in American cities.
Rhode Island’s capital has been the scene of 10 murders to date this year, compared to 11 at this time last year. In 2013, there were 11 at this point in the year, according to Providence police spokeswoman Lindsay Lague.
As the New York Times reports in a page one story today, homicide rates are way up over last year in a number of major American cities. For example, the murder rate in Milwaukee is up a startling 76 percent over last year; St. Louis is up 60 percent and Baltimore has witnessed a 56 percent jump. Murders in New Orleans, always a crime ridden city, have increased by 22 percent so far compared to last year and in the nation’s capital of Washington, D.C. homicides are up by 44 percent. Kansas City, MO. has seen a 20 percent rise and Dallas is up 17 percent. The nation’s largest city, New York, has nine percent more homicides and Philadelphia is up four percent.
Homicides in Baltimore have hit 215, compared to 138 at this time a year ago. Milwaukee has been the home to 104 homicides so far this year, compared to 86 in all of 2014.
Closer to home, Hartford reports 21 homicides so far this year compared to 19 in all of 2014. The Connecticut capital city has a population of about 125,000, about 50,000 less than Providence.