While there may be an increase in violent crimes in some places, is it really a trend? The answer is much more difficult and convoluted than many lawmakers make it sound. The FBI collects and handles crime data from more than 18,000 police agencies from throughout the United States.
Recently, the Marshall Project has obtained data from 61 local agencies for 2015 (directly from them). The FBI has not yet released its numbers yet for 2015.
More specifically, The Marshall project says The Marshall Project collected and analyzed 40 years of FBI data — through 2014 — on the most serious violent crimes in 68 police jurisdictions. We also obtained data directly from 61 local agencies for 2015 — a period for which the FBI has not yet released its numbers. (Our analysis found that violent crime in these jurisdictions rose 4 percent last year. But crime experts caution against making too much of year-over-year statistics.)
In the process, we were struck by the wide variation from community to community. To paraphrase an aphorism about politics, all crime is local. Each city has its own trends that depend on the characteristics of the city itself, the time frame, and the type of crime. In fact, the trends vary from neighborhood to neighborhood within cities; a recent study posited that 5 percent of city blocks account for 50 percent of the crime. That is why most Americans believe crime is worse, while significantly fewer believe it is worse where they live.
To read the entire article and report go to: Crime in Context | The Marshall Project
Regardless of whether overall crime is rising, when crime happens in your own neighborhood your don’t like it. Recently, in St. Louis, MO, video was released showing a passenger in a car opening fire during a fatal shooting. The fatal shooting happened in the 5300 block of Terry Ave around 7pm on August 4, 2016.
According to an article in the St. Louis Post Dispatch, Police say several men were outside a home when a gray Chevrolet Impala approached. A passenger emerged and fired at the men, hitting two people. Read more at stltoday.com
While enforcing laws is an important component of keeping crime under control, law enforcement is only one part of the justice system. There are other important components to the justice system such as the prosecutors, defense attorneys, judges and the courts.
In the United States a person is considered innocent until proven guilty. In most cases a person can get out of jail by posting bail while awaiting court proceedings for the charges against them.
Many groups oppose the current bail bond system and advocate for a bail system that is more fair for poor defendants. Cleveland.com is reporting the American Bar Association supports judge’s ruling that Calhoun, Georgia bail system is unfair: The American Bar Association is urging the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to rule in favor of a lawsuit filed by people accused of petty crimes who claim they were unfairly jailed by the city of Calhoun, Georgia, because they couldn’t afford bail, the American Bar Association Journal reports.
“Inflexible money-bail systems disrupt the lives of indigent defendants, lead to worse legal outcomes, and pressure defendants to plead guilty,” the brief states, according to the ABA Journal. “At the same time, inflexible money-bail systems… do not improve appearance rates or public safety, and leave jurisdictions that use such systems bearing the costs of overcrowded jails.”
To read more about this go here: American Bar Association blasts unfair bail practices