Most Dangerous City: Chicago Tops 400 Homicides, Leading Nation

Chicago tops 400 homicides after 4-year-old is shot and killed
Crime scene tape is stretched around the front of a home where a man was shot on in Chicago, on May 28. Chicago has already topped 400 homicides for the year after a 4-year-old was shot and killed on July 28. Scott Olson/Getty Images

Chicago is known for having the highest number of homicides in the United States, and it's living up to that reputation by already topping 400 killings for 2017, after four people were killed among 36 shot over the weekend, according to NBC Chicago.

Early Friday morning, a 31-year-old man became the 400th person to be killed in Chicago. Within hours of his death, a 27-year-old woman was shot in the head and killed, after which an 18-year-old also died from a similar gunshot wound on Saturday.

Authorities on Sunday discovered a 20-year-old man dead in a backyard with a gunshot wound to the back. And on Monday, a 21-year-old man died after being shot in the abdomen.

The string of killings has put Chicago’s homicide rate ahead of the pace set in 2016. There were 781 homicides in 2016, but the city didn’t see its 400th killing until August. According to a homicide database compiled by the Chicago Sun-Times, at least two homicides have occurred per day so far in 2017.

Only 38 of the victims so far have been women. Victim range in age from as young as 2 months to 78 years. Among the 36 people who were shot over the weekend was a 4-year-old boy who suffered a wound to the arm. He has been listed in good condition.

Gun violence has been the biggest cause of the huge homicide number in Chicago so far this year. Since January, more than 2,100 people across the city have been shot. Last year, Chicago tracked over 3,000 shooting incidents.

Chicago’s population could also be a factor—it is the third most populous city in the U.S., home to an estimated 2.7 million people.

A report by The Trace, a nonprofit gun resource, found that while Chicago did have the most homicides, when considered on a per-capita basis, the city’s homicide rate was significantly lower. Released in June, the report listed Chicago as 18th among U.S. cities in homicide rate per capita. New Orleans was listed as No. 1, followed by Detroit and St. Louis.

According to the report, Chicago had 27.9 killings per 100,000 residents, while New Orleans had 44.5 homicides per 100,000 people.