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North Charleston Police
Do you think that the North Charleston Police Department has taken appropriate steps towards reform a year after the Walter Scott shooting?
North Charleston Killing Continues Into 2017
1/4/2017 4:16:46 PM

By Barney Blakeney

And let the killing begin. Forty-five minutes into the New Year, the first murder of 2017 in North Charleston was committed on Dorchester Road. And as the community moves into a new year, that trend continues. On January 2 a juvenile was shot in the leg cross town on Florida Avenue. Two days earlier on Dec. 30 the city’s last murder of 2016 was committed on Iris Street. The city finished the year with 32 homicides, the most in two decades.

As the nation looks at Chicago as a most deadly city for young blacks – Chicago experienced some 762 murders in 2016 – North Charleston ranks as the nation’s leading city for murders per capita 1,000 population. According to one source in the first half of 2016, North Charleston recorded a steadier rate of homicides than New York City, Los Angeles and Chicago.

North Charleston has emerged as a deadly place. By May 30 there had been 14 homicides in North Charleston. There only were 25 homicides committed in the city in 2015.

Its black communities have become killing fields. The city’s most unsafe communities are located in southern most neighborhoods where there is the highest concentration of black residents. Almost two-thirds of the county’s 57 homicides in 2016 occurred in North Charleston. North Charleston typically has one of the highest homicide rates in the region.

According to NeighborhoodScouts data, with a crime rate of 61 per one thousand residents, North Charleston has one of the highest crime rates in America compared to all communities of all sizes. One's chance of becoming a victim of either violent or property crime in North Charleston is one in 16. Within South Carolina, more than 83% of the communities have a lower crime rate than North Charleston, according to the source.

NeighborhoodScout used the seven offenses from the uniform crime reports, collected by the FBI from 18,000 local law enforcement agencies for its analysis. For North Charleston, it found that the violent crime rate is one of the highest in the nation. Violent offenses tracked included rape, murder and non-negligent manslaughter, armed robbery, and aggravated assault, including assault with a deadly weapon.

According to NeighborhoodScout's analysis of FBI reported crime data, the chance of becoming a victim of one of these crimes in North Charleston is one in 135.

The S.C. National Action Network held a press conference specifically to address the Dec. 30 Iris Street murder. North Charleston police have arrested the murdered woman’s boyfriend as her accused killer. NAN Field Director Elder James Johnson said the organization specifically was concerned about the murder because it received information police were called to the incident address about disturbances two times in the previous 24 hours before the woman’s body was found outside her apartment.

“We want to know what do police in North Charleston plan to do about crime. This incident, coupled with the murder rate from last year is something we can’t tolerate. We won’t allow the police to blame the citizens. They are paid to deal with this,” Johnson said.

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