FBI figures: record surge in US killings last year

The number of homicides in the United States increased by 30 percent last year compared to 2019, according to data from the U.S. Federal Police Department FBI. It is the biggest increase since the start of measurements in 1960, and the total number of serious offences went down.

The number of murders in the US rose by around 4900 to more than 21,500. The number of murders went up especially in the summer months and remained at a high level after that. The total number of murders is even less than in the 1980s, and according to the FBI, 77 percent of the murders were committed with a firearm. In 2019, that was 74 percent.

According to The New York Times, most murders have been recorded in several cities, such as Albuquerque, Memphis, Milwaukee, Tulsa and Des Moines.

Major Cities

Some 500 murders were reported in New York City. Thats about 200 more than in 2019, but less than in 1990, when 2200 people were killed. In Los Angeles, there were 351 murders, a hundred more than in 2019, and the record was 1010 in 1980.

A total of over 9900 black people, 7000 white people, nearly 500 people of different ethnicity and about 300 people of unknown ethnicity were murdered. Some 14,000 men and 3600 women are known to have been killed.

Corona Crisis

Experts tell US media that there is no unambiguous explanation for the number of murders, but point to the destabilizing effect of the corona crisis. People lost loved ones and became stressed, lost their jobs and ended up in great uncertainty. More guns were sold as well.

By the way, the number of murders reported is not complete. Some 16,000 out of 18,000 federal, regional and local governments and institutions have reported their crime data to the FBI, but institutions are not obliged to do so.