Violent crime rates over the last thirty years have plummeted, according to a new study from the Brennan Center for Justice at the New York University School of Law.

The report looks at crimes, and specifically murders, per 100,000 people in the thirty largest cities in the United States.

Cumulatively, the crime rate dropped 7.6% across these metros between 2017 to 2018.

However, in some major cities, crime increased dramatically, as evidenced by murder rates in the following metros:

  • Austin: +29.3%
  • Seattle: +19.7%
  • Washington D.C.: +34.9%

Murder rates in the following cities decreased:

  • Oklahoma City: -41.1%
  • San Francisco: -35%
  • Las Vegas: -29.6%
  • Charlotte: -45%

Alternative Solutions to Police and Safety

Many communities are still seeking the best strategy to fight violent crime at the local level.

On the one hand, the broken windows theory increases the amount of police and safety resources and presence in poor neighborhoods. On the other hand, community policing strategies seeks to build relationships between law enforcement and the public so that conflict is mitigated through social bonds and connections.

One interesting feature about the report is that not all cities responded to the Brennan Center’s request for data. Connected data sets could be useful as cities seek to bring crime down even further below the current violent crime rate of 6 per 100,000 people.

Better data-sets could help researchers determine which approach and programs are successful in lowering crime rates.