FBI: Chicago Had Most Murders in 2012, But Not Per Capita

By Kyla Gardner on September 19, 2013 7:05am 

 Police on the scene of a homicide in Washington Park in 2013. Chicago saw the most homicides of any city in 2012, according to data from the FBI.
Police on the scene of a homicide in Washington Park in 2013. Chicago saw the most homicides of any city in 2012, according to data from the FBI.
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DNAinfo/Devlin Brown (File Photo)

CHICAGO — The FBI released its 2012 crime statistics this week, revealing what most Chicagoans already knew: The city had more murders than any other place in the United States last year.

There is, however, some news in the data that may come as a relief to worried residents.

Despite the city's more than 500 murders, Chicago residents are less likely to be the victims of murder than some other city dwellers, if total populations are taken into account.

Of the 75 largest U.S. cities — those with more than 250,000 residents — 12 cities had higher murder rates per capita than Chicago, according to FBI data analyzed by DNAinfo Chicago.

Detroit had the highest murder-per-capita rate, with one murder for every 1,832 people. Chicago had one murder for every 5,417 people, data showed.

Chicago's population is about 2.7 million, and Detroit's is about 700,000, according to the FBI.

Ahead of Chicago for the murder-per-capita rate were also New Orleans, St. Louis, Baltimore, Newark, N.J., Oakland, Calif., Stockton, Calif. Kansas City, Mo., Philadelphia, Cleveland, Memphis, Tenn. and Atlanta, according to a DNAinfo analysis of F.B.I. data.

Chicago also had the most motor vehicle thefts of the largest 75 cities in 2012 with just more than 17,000, according to FBI data.

The city's 506 murders, according to city data, is the highest one-year tally since 2008.

In 2012 in Chicago there were also 112,466 property crimes, or 1 for every 24 people. Property crimes include larceny thefts (72,717 during 2012, or 1 for every 37 people), burglaries (22,748, 1 per 119 people), and motor vehicle thefts (17,001, 1 per every 160 people).

Chicago also saw 13,476 robberies, 1 per 201 people, and 12,272 aggravated assaults, or 1 per 221 people.

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