Baltimore has not seen the large increase in murders over the last few years like other big cities, the total murders in 2021 was 335, barely above the ten year average of 300 murders a year. This is not to say Baltimore doesn’t have a deadly crime problem, they do, but it isn’t anything new.
The number of murders has varied but stead, but the decrease in the population has made the murder rates increase. In the the last 4 decades the murder rate has grown from 30 to 47 for every 100,000 people well above the 6.5 national level.
In its heyday in 1950, Baltimore had a population of nearly 950,000 people. Now the city has a residential population of around 600,000.
The question isn’t why are people leaving Baltimore, but why would anybody stay. The murder rates at time are almost ten times the national average, vast parts of the city are abandoned and business are leaving for the safety of their employees, why would anyone want to stay.
Perhaps Steph Sampson said it best.
Murders on the Rise
In the first six months of 2022, Baltimore had 177 murders. This is higher then any of the past 12 years. Baltimore has always had a significant number of murders in the last 20 years but the murder rate increase significantly after the death of Freddie Gray in 2015. The murders increased in 2015 to 344 from 211 in 2014.
Request for Federal and State Help
Baltimore Police Commissioner Michael Harrison has made numerous request for federal and state assistance to help curb the crime in Baltimore. This is because despite having 2,640 positions budgeted for officers, the Baltimore Police Department only has 2,262 of them occupied. This leaves the department around 378 policemen short. In addition, Commissioner Harrison disclosed that the number of police who are really available is much lower, coming in at 1,873. This figure takes into account the officers who are suspended for a variety of reasons, who are being investigated, and who are in the process of receiving training.