Montgomery's Murder Rate Nearly Double Compared To Other Southern Cities With Similar Population

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By Catalina Trivino

Now that Montgomery has recorded its 45th homicide of the year, how does that compare to other cities the same size?

 
We looked further into where Montgomery stands as far as homicides and what we've found is Montgomery's 45 homicides are nearly double compared to cities with similar populations in the south.
 
It's the topic of conversation in Earnest Blackshear's psychology class now that Montgomery has recorded its 45th homicide of the year.
  
"We were doing the same initatives in 2003 when we had a low homicide rate as we were in 2007 and even present day. Certainly, it makes you do a greater focus on the problem when you are having a year like this year," Said Montgomery Police Chief, Kevin Murphy, in previous interview with Alabama News Network.
 
But where do other cities with similar populations to Montgomery rank? Shreveport, Louisiana police tell us they've had 24 murders this year. Columbus, Georgia has just recorded this, its 20th murder of the year.
 
Earnest Blackshear studies community violence and says the violent trends in Montgomery are due to concentrated areas of certain populations.
 
"The more code of the streets, concentration within a population, the more violence you're going to see. And Montgomery is the ninth city with the highest population of African Americans who adhere a big portion of these young men who adhere to the code of the streets," Said Dr. Blackshear, an Alabama State University professor who studies community violence.
 
Montgomery Police tell us about 85 percent of this year's murders have been solved and there are other criminal activities underlying the homicides. Police say trends show most murders in our area start with drugs, robbery, prostitution or domestic violence.
 
The Columbus, Georgia, police department believes its  murder rate is lower because of its D.A.R.E. program, where police educate hundreds of students about the drugs and gang involvement. And in Shreveport, police have tried having more of a presence at most businesses and think that trickles down to a lower murder rate.
 
Montgomery police say homicides are usually not random. They say the people involved often know each other and look to violence to resolve disputes. Montgomery's highest number of murders was 58 in 1975, but the city had 18 in 2003.

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