STUMP » Articles » Mortality with Meep: Chicago Homicides » 5 August 2019, 13:06

Where Stu & MP spout off about everything.

Mortality with Meep: Chicago Homicides  


5 August 2019, 13:06

There’s other death talk around… but I have my own interests.

If you’d like to know my opinion, check this out from 2015. Someone else got more specific, and the point is to de-sensationalize events where people are looking to make a sensation.

If you want to talk gun policy, let me direct you to this guy, who knows a lot more about guns than I do.

But Chicago — let’s kick it off with a few news items:

News item: 59 shot, 7 fatally in Chicago weekend shootings

Shootings across the city of Chicago this past weekend have left seven people dead and another 52 people wounded.

One of the most recent shootings occurred in the city’s Austin neighborhood. Investigators placed down several evidence markers Sunday night on Bloomingdale Avenue near Central Avenue. That’s where police said two men walked up to another man sitting in a parked car and started shooting.
The shooting was one of multiple that took place over the past weekend, including two mass shootings in one police district.
“As a city we have to stand up and do a hell of a lot more than we’ve done in a very long time,” said Mayor Lori Lightfoot.
“We’ve spent over the years probably hundreds of millions of dollars policing on the West Side, CPD, federal and state law enforcement and we have barely moved the needle,” Lightfoot said.

News item: ‘A lot of nights end up this way’: 7 shot in Lawndale’s Douglas Park

Though Chicago police officers and park visitors gathered at a crime scene in Douglas Park on Sunday clashed more than once, they seemed to agree on at least one thing: It shouldn’t be like this.

Seven people had just been shot. An officer was telling a group of people waiting outside the yellow crime scene tape that Chicago doesn’t have to tolerate this volume of gun violence.

The gunshot victims had been visiting the park when a shooter from a black Camaro fired at them around 1:20 a.m. in the 2900 block of West Roosevelt Road in the Lawndale neighborhood, according to Chicago police. Investigators could not disclose whether there was more than one person shooting or if that person was a man or a woman, a police spokesman said.

Those shot included three women, ages 19, 22 and 25, and four men, ages 20, 21, 21 and 23. One of the 21-year-old men was in critical condition with a gunshot wound to his groin, police said. Five people were taken to area hospitals via ambulance, and two people arrived at hospitals in private vehicles, officials said.

After the shooting, red tape hugged a blue playground at Douglas Park near Richmond Street. Officers gathered near that intersection, a couple of them shining flashlights around the park while circling the play structure. Music continued to play, blaring from a speaker left near the park.

Douglas Park closes to visitors at 11 p.m., according to the Chicago Park District.

So that’s the most recent news.

Let’s go to the stats.


To make this simpler, I’m going by absolute count. In short periods, that doesn’t have a large effect on trends in rate. Over more years, obviously there’s a difference, as Chicago population has fluctuated.

I’m using Hey Jackass as my source, because of this comment by a Chicago cop:

Groot is annoyed that the weekend numbers continue to grab headlines while Special Ed and his crew are desperately trying to hide homicides – look at the discrepancy between “official numbers” and

And after this weekend, odds are even better that Special Ed and his band of dumbasses don’t survive the month.

FWIW, Groot = Mayor Lori Lightfoot and Special Ed = Eddie T. Johnson, Superintendent of the Chicago Police.

They’ve got a nickname for every Chicago player.

Hey Jackass uses a variety of sources. It’s possible there’s double-counting, but given they track homicide locations, I think that’s unlikely.

Let’s just look at the last few years’ homicide stats, by month. I had to put these together, because I cannot find that Hey Jackass maintains an easily-downloaded database.


Back in 2017, I made some graphs based on Hey Jackass data. I’ve updated the spreadsheet, and here are the new graphs:

Homicides by month:

Note the seasonality – yes, it’s higher in summer (when people are outside, and annoying each other). I specifically highlighted 2016, because it was such a bad year.

Cumulative homicides:

This is to compare years. Obviously, 2016 was really bad, and 2017 was less bad, but it didn’t get less bad til the second half of 2017. 2018 was again less bad, and 2019 looks to be between 2012 and 2015. Could be better.

But, to make it easier to compare longer-term trends and to smear out seasonality, I did a 12-month moving average of monthly homicides:

Again, we see it got bad in 2016, came back down in 2017, and 2019 looks on a par with the 2012 peak average (the dotted line)

So the trend is moving in a good direction, but one does want to see it drop more. 2016 was a hideous year, with some improvement in 2017, but we will see how it goes with Mayor Lightfoot (and if she does shake up the CPD.)


Underlying spreadsheet for above graphs

July 2017 STUMP post: Mortality Monday: More Chicago Shootings and Longer-Term Trends

March 2017: Mortality Monday: Chicago Shootings

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