At the Summer Heritage Jazz Series concert last night, the 18th Police District was out in force showing off its new (ish) Segways. This was the first time I’d seen them in the park, but the officers assured me they’d been patrolling with them for the last couple of months. As you might imagine, the bicycle-mounted officers (and this photographer) are a little envious:
Somebody stole my commuter bike from Broad and Chestnut sometime Friday evening. Here’s what it looks like:
It’s an old KHS mountain bike converted to a road bike with black plastic fenders, drop handlebars, a ripped yellow seat, rear rack, two water bottle cages, and a rather strange shifter configuration. They’re affixed to the stem. If you see it: 267.290.7474 or email@example.com
The Philadelphia murder rate is holding steady at about a 20% decline over 2007. That’s shy of the mayor’s 25% goal but an admirable achievement nonetheless. Still, more than 250 Philadelphians have been murdered this year. Back in November 2007, I posted a trailer for what appeared to be a longer documentary about murder in Philadelphia. Subsequently that documentary has been completed and has gotten some nice press for its relatively unvarnished look at the neighborhoods and circumstances that disproportionately contribute to the murder count in Philadelphia.
PHILADELPHIA HOMICIDE CITY Money Murder & Politics is a look into what issues really contribute to the struggle and poverty currently in America. It identifies that struggle and poverty are the most popular assumptions for the high murder rate in Philadelphia both statistically and through experience. The movie communicates possible solutions as well as some of the details seen from the situation as it exists currently.
The movie digs into the life and culture of the rougher neighborhoods and communities in Philadelphia in hopes to shed light on the issues faced there to the rest of the population.
July is not officially over yet, but the numbers reported on the Philadelphia Police Department website are showing 187 murders for 2008 as of midnight on the 30th. By my calculations, that means there have been 24 murders this month. That is, of course, still a terrible number, but to put it in perspective, in July of 2007, there were 42 murders in the month of July. That number for 2006? 49.
July has typically been the worst month for killings in Philadelphia, but this July will record one of the lowest monthly totals of 2008. Overall, murders are down 23.36% over last year. At this rate, we may get a murder rate decline of more than the 25% the Nutter administration promised.
Today makes a year since that horrible day and Tyshon remains in my heart. R.I.P. to one of my BEST friends.They said, “Gone. But not forgotten.” And that is so true. You WILL NEVER BE FORGOTTEN!! I Love You soooo much!
His Myspace page is still active and still collecting remembrances.
Philadelphia’s murder rate continues to run about 20% below last year’s numbers, through June. This is off Mayor Nutter’s ambitious goal of a 25% reduction. A 25% drop is still within the realm of possibility, but as the year goes on, it looks increasingly out of reach. In fact, given the numbers today, we need to average fewer than 23 murders per month for the remainder of the year to hit that goal. Here are the numbers from the Philadelphia Police Department’s website for the end of June:
This chart compares the monthly breakdown in murders comparing 2006-2008. While the decline over 2007 is 19.7%, the decline over 2006 is just 11.9%.
As I have argued, there appears to have been a shift in the murder rate that dates to about April of 2007, marking the start of the decline that continues today. In fact, if you compare relative twelve-month periods, you’ll see that the shift is much more pronounced than the annual totals indicate. Between July of 2006 and June of 2007, there were 424 murders. Between July of 2007 and June of 2008, there were 352 murders. That difference of 72 murders during those comparative twelve-month periods amounts to a decline of 17%.
As the graph indicates, July has traditionally been a dismal month for murders, and there’ll likely be nothing different about that this year, but let’s hope the decline continues. I’m going to predict it will, and July 2008 will see no more than 33 murders.
Three friends came out to see the June 12th Jazz Concert in Malcolm X Park. I asked how they’d heard about the concerts and why they come to the park. For them, Malcolm X Park is safer than their local park at 50th and Parrish. Ilsa and a friend (who did not want to be on video) related what happened during and after a recent double homicide in their neighborhood.
Late Tuesday evening, someone fired off three shots at 52nd and Addison St. across from the park. Two neighbors who were in Malcolm X Park at the time said that someone had fired into the air to signal the start of a brawl. The PPD was on it very quickly, no brawl ensued, and nobody was injured. They did make a few arrests.