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Hard times, less crime in New York

A New York Times article makes an interesting observation:

Unemployment has reached 10.3 percent in New York City, higher than it is in the state and nationally. The Bloomberg administration is weighing cuts from every city agency to help close a $4.1 billion deficit next year. Homelessness among families is at a record high, with more than 28,000 men, women and children now in the city’s shelter system.
In 2009, the signs of a bad economy are like blinking neon lights on Broadway.
Yet Police Department statistics show that the number of major crimes is continuing to fall this year in nearly every category, upending the common wisdom that hard times bring more crime.
“The idea that everyone has ingrained into them — that as the economy goes south, crime has to get worse — is wrong,” said David M. Kennedy, a professor at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice. “It was never right to begin with.”

You can read the full article on the Times web site.

Earlier this year, The Post's Allison Klein examined some similar statistics in her own story:

Violent crime has plummeted in the Washington area and in major cities across the country, a trend criminologists describe as baffling and unexpected.
The District, New York and Los Angeles are on track for fewer killings this year than in any other year in at least four decades. Boston, San Francisco, Minneapolis and other cities are also seeing notable reductions in homicides.
"Experts did not see this coming at all," said Andrew Karmen, a criminologist and professor of sociology at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York.

Read her story on our web site.

Then tell us -- what do you think? Do these findings surprise you? Why or why not?

By Washington Post Editors  |  November 30, 2009; 10:37 AM ET
Categories:  Allison Klein , Around the Nation , Crime Statistics  
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The article written by the Post's Allison Klein used crime stats that were incorrect. When the FBI reviewed the District's date, their review showed that crime in the District increased and was not down as Chief Lanier and the MPD claimed. Please see the Washington Examiner article regarding DC crime stats.

Posted by: Jet_Mech | November 30, 2009 1:19 PM | Report abuse

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