What We Know: Homicides, shootings double in Chicago

AP News
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Posted: Mar 01, 2016 4:40 PM

So far this year, Chicago has seen about twice as many homicides and shootings as in the same period in 2015, according to police, and the number of illegal guns seized has dropped. Here's what we know about the crime figures:

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MORE VIOLENCE: At the end of February, the city had recorded 95 homicides and more than 400 shootings for 2016. Those are double the numbers from last January and February. February alone saw 165 shootings and 43 homicides.

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FEWER GUN SEIZURES: Police seized at least 110 fewer illegal guns than in the same period last year, a sharp contrast from the administration of former Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy, who often displayed seized weapons at news conferences. Officers made many fewer street stops, too.

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THE IMPLICATIONS: The statistics could be another sign that officers have become less aggressive since the release of a video showing the fatal police shooting of Laquan McDonald. The death of the black teenager led to weeks of protests and murder charges against one officer. Interim Police Superintendent John Escalante said he was so concerned about officers possibly holding back that he filmed a video for the entire department in which he encouraged them to do their jobs.