Another Increase in LA Murders

According to data released by the LAPD, homicides in the city of Los Angeles have increased this year after reaching a 15-year high in 2021.  Kevin Rector of the Los Angeles Times reports that the 397 murders recorded last year were the most since 2006.   Like last year, news stories covering the increases in murders reflexively follow the same narrative, ie: The bloodshed remains far below that of the early 1990s, when the city had more than 1,000 homicides per year.”  This leaves out the fact that between 1974 and 1994 homicides in California doubled under sentencing reforms adopted in the late 1960s.  The annual increase in homicides over the past two years is unprecedented.  If California’s recent host of “compassionate” sentencing reforms are not rejected, the state is well on the way to matching its 1994 murder rate.  The story also reports the violent crimes in LA through April were up 7.2% and property crimes were up over 11%.  The actual number of property crimes is unquestionably much higher.  With little or no consequences for most property crimes in California,  many victims are not even reporting them to police.

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