The Houston Police Department's unofficial tally has recorded 339
murders in the Houston area this year — a drastic 44 percent increase
from last year's 235 murders.
According to KHOU's Jeremy Rogalski and Tina Macias,
Houston is on track to record more murders than any year in more than a
decade. The current numbers already surpass yearly totals going all the
way back to 2007.
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According to Mayor Sylvester Turner, the pandemic and high crime rates are likely correlated.
"This has been a crazy year, people are going through a
whole lot, experiencing a whole lot, a lot of things happening on our
streets, a lot of people who are on edge," Mayor Turner said during a
Murder isn't the only violent crime to see an increase in
numbers—reported assaults in Houston have gone up as well. There have
been 50,108 assaults reported in Houston over the first nine months of
the year, a 9 percent increase over the 46,014 assaults reported in that
same span in 2019.
While some crimes have increased significantly, other violent crimes like robbery and rape have gone down.