How Chicago’s Violence is Affecting the Country

Chicago’s death toll is so high this year it’s driving up murder rates across the country.

The Washington Post reports that homicides and shootings in the city are both far ahead of last year despite days left in December.

Murder rates have increased in several cities, but Chicago continues to stand out, both through sheer numbers and the effect it is having on homicide rates nationwide.

According to a report released by the Brennan Center for Justice, a New York-Based law and policy institute, the homicide rate for the country’s 30 biggest cities is expected to increase by 14 percent this year.

But murders in Chicago account for 43.7 percent of the overall increase in killings, meaning that Chicago alone is responsible for nearly half of this spike.

So far this year, there were 738 killings through Sunday night in Chicago, according to a police spokesman.  The city had 481 killings last year, a number that was surpassed by the end of the Labor Day weekend this year.

Chicago has also had more than 3,400 shootings, resulting in thousands of victims, police say. They blame repeat offenders who are using illegal guns for the upsurge.