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Columbus homicide rates decline more than any other major U.S. city besides Boston

Columbus homicide rates decline more than any other major U.S. city besides Boston

Sav McKee

Earlier this week, The Wall Street Journal highlighted that homicides in American cities are falling at the fastest pace in decades, and Columbus is no exception to that trend.

Columbus specifically saw the second highest decline in homicides in big cities, with a 58% decrease, right behind Boston which saw an 82% decrease in homicides in the 23-24 study.

This year has been one of the least violent years (in terms of homicides) that Columbus has seen in several of the past years, with 2021 being the deadliest year here on record. But it wasn’t just Columbus that experienced an increase in crime during the pandemic.

Photo via The Wall Street Journal

The Wall Street Journal said, “Researchers and authorities attributed the upward spike to several factors, including crime-prevention programs, courts and prisons being unable to operate normally when Covid was spreading; young people not in school due to shutdowns; and law enforcement pulling back after social unrest following the high-profile police killings of George Floyd and other Black people.”


WSJ credits more police presence, more police engagement, community-based crime prevention programs, and a decrease in nationwide social unrest to the decrease in homicides. Leslie Parsons, an assistant chief for the Metropolitan Police Department in Washington, where homicides have dropped 26% so far this year compared with 2023, told the Wall Street Journal,“It’s not one single thing that makes that number fall. Here in D.C., and I’m sure it’s like this in most cities, it’s a collaboration of efforts.” 

“There’s just a ton of places that you can point to that are showing widespread, very positive trends,” Jeff Asher, co-founder of criminal justice consulting firm AH Datalytics, told The Wall Street Journal. “Nationally, you’re seeing a very similar situation to what you saw in the mid-to-late ’90s. But it’s potentially even larger in terms of the percentages and numbers of the drops.”

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