On Thursday, Chicago’s interim police department superintendent Charlie Beck revealed to CNN that although homicides are decreasing, the city is “still not safe enough,” after being asked about questions she receives about crime in Chicago and how she responds to them. Beck also expressed that crossing the 500-homicide threshold was an important yet inadequate achievement.
“To be brutally honest, it’s still not safe enough. 500 homicides is — and even though that’s a nice milestone — it’s way too many,” Beck answered CNN reporter Omar Jimenez.
According to official statistics, In 2019, the city of Chicago had 492 homicides, which was down 13 percent from 2018 and down 38 percent since 2016.
Chicago has also seen its number of shootings decrease in recent years. Though still an alarming number, the city experienced 2,521 shootings in 2019, down 10 percent from 2018, and 39 percent from 2016.
However, the city has made progress nonetheless as the city is at its lowest crime levels since 2015, Newsweek reports.
In a press release, Mayor Lori Lightfoot spoke on the city’s crime statistics in Chicago, stating, “These historic reductions in citywide crime are the direct result of Chicago’s police officers, community-based organizations and street outreach groups who have dedicated their lives to keeping this city, and it’s residents safe every day.”
“By investing in our South and West Side neighborhoods and addressing the root causes of gun violence, we can build on this progress in 2020 and continue making meaningful gains in public safety in communities throughout the city,” Lightfoot stated.